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Fellowship Story Showcase

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As part of the Center for Health Journalism Fellowship, journalists work with a senior fellow to develop a special project. Recent projects have examined health disparities by ZIP code in the San Francisco Bay Area, anxiety disorders and depression in the Hispanic immigrant community in Washington state, and the importance of foreign-born doctors to health care in rural communities.

To keep kids off drugs, CSU Channel Islands lecturer says understanding the why is as important as the how

Why would a physician prescribe the medication knowing that 95 percent of the people don’t need it? It’s an issue that is plaguing the pharmaceutical industry and affecting the way Americans deal with and use prescription medications.

Determined addicts routinely bypass controls while some doctors overprescribe with little apparent consequence

Despite the walls put up by regulators to limit prescription drug abuse, those barriers are often just porous enough for a steady supply of opiates to end up on the street.

Rural Oklahoma health-care needs underserved, area lacks specialists

Is Oklahoma headed toward a crisis in access to health care? Health experts say yes -- for many reasons. This three-part series takes a look at the problems, how it affects all Oklahomans and what can be done to change it.

Veteran youth and family treatment program director urges parents to 'lock up their medication'

After being addicted to heroin and alcohol for 26 years, Kevin Smith has spent the last 19 years of his life sober, and helping those in Santa Barbara County battle the same demons he faced two decades before.

County's top lawman says treatment programs play a vital role in crime fight, even in face of funding threats

Santa Barbara County Sheriff Bill Brown sees substance abuse as a growing problem among the citizens he’s sworn to protect as well as those he’s put away.

Santa Barbara County law-enforcement officers have seen firsthand what prescription drug misuse and abuse can do to a person — physically, mentally and legally — since they not only investigate drug-related crimes but are often the first responders to the many medical emergencies involving overdoses.

Physician shortage contributes to looming health-care crisis

The first in a three part series on the causes behind Oklahoma's lack of access to health care, including a physician shortage, geographic disparities and lack of transportation options.

Farmers in Santa Cruz, Monterey and San Benito counties donate thousands of tons of fresh fruits and vegetables to food banks every year, supply feeding centers as far away as Washington and Colorado. It’s a massive foodlift operation that all began 38 years ago with a freezer full of slightly yellow cauliflower.

Maria Martinez and her husband and three sons live in a colorful stucco home in a subsidized housing development near San Diego Bay. But as soon as she steps outside, Martinez and her neighbors are confronted with an onslaught of environmental health hazards.

As the staff and volunteers at Second Harvest Food Bank work to combine food distribution with community-based nutrition education, the obvious questions arise: Do these peer education programs actually make a difference? Do participants change their eating habits for the better? And do these behavioral changes create measurable differences in participants' health?

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Announcements

The pandemic has thrown into brutal relief the extent to which the U.S. health care system produces worse outcomes for patients of color. And yet there has been scant focus on one of the biggest drivers of structural racism in health care: How doctors and hospitals are paid. In this webinar, we’ll highlight the ways in which the health care system’s focus on money and good grades is shortchanging the health of communities of color. Sign-up here!

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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