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Kanawha County

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Lexi Winnell, a 9-year-old girl with Native American ancestry, is insulin resistant. Her grandparents have gone all out to keep her from getting diabetes.

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A federally-funded health center, Cabin Creek Health Systems accepts patients whether they can pay or not. Freida Smith is one of their 14,000 patients.

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Last August, Kanawha County school cooks were abruptly ordered to quit serving prepackaged food and cook instead, from scratch, with fresh ingredients, five days a week. With fewer students eating, Kanawha County's food program is projected to make about $350,000 less than it did the previous year.

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Last summer, seven of West Virginia's poorest counties agreed to try cooking lunch and breakfast with fresh ingredients all year, five days a week. They would offer meals free to all students who want to eat.

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West Virginia has the nation's worst statistics in 10 of 12 categories in the new 2011 Gallup Healthways ranking. More than one in three West Virginians -- 35.3 percent -- are now obese.

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West Virginia is among the top five states on just about every national chronic disease list. Journalist Kate Long investigates what's behind the state's poor showing.

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A formerly sickly child, West Virginia's top health official finds himself in the position to affect the health of more than 400,000 West Virginians enrolled in Medicaid, DHHR's biggest program.

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On a tie vote, state senators on Thursday rejected a proposal to require a prescription for cold and allergy medicines containing pseudoephedrine.

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West Virginia children with autism would have a much easier time getting treatment under legislation passed Thursday by the House of Delegates. 

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State lawmakers are moving closer to snuffing out synthetic versions of cocaine and marijuana in West Virginia.

Both the House of Delegates and state Senate on Wednesday unanimously passed similar proposals (HB2505, SB63) to make it illegal to possess or distribute the drugs, often found in convenience stores and head shops.

 

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