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Santa Cruz

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The story was produced as a project for USC Annenberg's 2018 National Fellowship.
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When Tim Fitzmaurice lost his wife Ginny, his partner of 44 years, to dementia in 2014, his experience as her caregiver brought him so much pain and guilt that he kept it to himself. Until Tuesday, when he asked Santa Cruz County health staff to reach out to families dealing with dementia.

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A retired doctor wonders why Dominican Hospital in Santa Cruz is sponsoring a visit by a private company that does screening tests that US experts do not recommend for the general population.

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Nina Lutz, 18, is the third teen in Santa Cruz in 5 years to be stricken with osteosarcoma, a bone cancer so rare it affects just 400 children a year. A talented artist, she created illustrations for a children's book during her nine months of treatment, and she's selling the book to raise money.

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Laura Vollset, a Santa Cruz mother of twins, agreed to share her story of recovery from postpartum depression to encourage other mothers to see help.

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At the first meeting in L.A. we could see that we were not the only ones feeling torn between the desire to do in-depth reporting and the time-consuming demands of marketing that work on social media. However, over time, we came to appreciate how critical it is to reach out to readers via social media, how quickly readers' habits are changing, and how the web is redefining the concept of community.

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An increase in malpractice insurance coverage is under review by Dominican Hospital's parent, Catholic Healthcare West, sparking concerns among doctors locally and across the state.

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Rising rates of unvaccinated kids, bird flu/H5N1 reemerges, and a looming doctor shortage, plus more in today's Daily Briefing

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It takes a certain kind of stubbornness and stick-to-it-ness to develop a successful online news site or a popular blog, especially if you are writing about the civic life of your community — not fashion tidbits or celebrity gossip. We are working with these news innovators to expand their health reporting.

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Did a federal task force ignore evidence that more frequent mammograms save lives? Answers and more in our Daily Briefing.

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Announcements

The USC Center for Health Journalism at the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism is seeking two Engagement Editors to serve as thought leaders in one of the most innovative and rewarding arenas in journalism today – “engaged reporting” that puts the community at the center of the reporting process. Learn more about the positions and apply to join our team.

Let us support your next ambitious health reporting project through our National Fellowship program. Apply today.

Nowhere was the massive COVID wave of winter 2021 more devastating than in America’s nursing homes, where 71,000 residents died in the surge. In this webinar, we’ll hear from the lead reporter in the USA Today series "Dying for Care," who will show how an original data analysis and an exhaustive reporting effort revealed a pattern of unnecessary deaths that compounded the pandemic’s brutal toll. Sign-up here!

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