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While a weekend snowstorm raged in Washington, D.C., a small group of health care advocates gathered in a conference room at the Hyatt Regency Hotel and were treated to a history lesson as well as a glimpse into the cold realities of Indian Country.

The topic: American Indian Health Policy. And unlike the weather that everyone talks about, a trio of speakers addressed a subject they insist is largely overlooked.

Picture of Lisa Baertlein

In California, food-makers and restaurants are battling backers of a tax on sugary drinks and junk food that could help decrease obesity.

 

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While reporting for a four-part series on the wide gap in life expectancies and disease rates between people in nearby neighborhoods – due to drastically different conditions and social status – I expected to find that health care reform legislation would do little to address this issue. The reform legislation, after all, is primarily about health care insurance. But I was surprised to find that, for the first time, Congressional legislation contains at least $3.4 billion to focus on improving health disparities.

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We have a guest post today from Felice Freyer, veteran medical writer for the Providence Journal, member of the Association of Health Care Journalists Board of Directors and chair of AHCJ's Right to Know Committee.

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Immgration reform is in the air once again - with President Obama saying the issue will be tackled next year. Join Health Dialogues as we look at what it's like for undocumented and seasonal workers to get health care under the current system, and how immigration reform could change things.

Picture of Barbara Feder Ostrov

Each month, the San Francisco public radio station KQED airs an hour-long program called Health Dialogues that delves deeply into such topics as food safety, asthma, swine flu and environmental health.

Picture of Shuka Kalantari

Comprehensive immigration reform hasn't happened since 1986, when the Immigration Reform & Control Act (IRCA) was passed. Now immigration reform is in the air once again - with President Obama saying the issue will be tackled next year. What is it like for undocumented and seasonal workers to get health care under the current system? Will immigration reform change things?

Picture of Angilee Shah

Stan Dorn, senior research associate at the Urban Institute, says that in the game of health care reform legislation, "We are in the playoffs."

The players are largely Democrats and the few Republicans who are not opposing reforms outright. Here is a roundup of the agreements and debates in Washington, D.C., as well as a few story ideas, which Dorn outlined in this morning's seminar with the National Health Journalism Fellows.

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A special report to The Filipino Press

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U.S. children and teens have struggled with increasing rates of depression, anxiety and suicidal behavior for much of the past decade. Join us as we explore the systemic causes and policy failures that have accelerated the crisis and its inequitable impact, as well as promising community-driven approaches and evidence-based practices. The webinar will provide fresh ideas for reporting on the mental health of youth and investigating the systems and services. Sign-up here!

The USC Center for Health Journalism at the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism is seeking two Engagement Editors and a social media consultant to join its team. Learn more about the positions and apply.

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