Health

Health

Natalie Krebs / IPR

More than two dozen experts, parents and lawmakers gathered in West Des Moines on Friday to discuss issues surrounding childcare in the state.

Wellmark

An estimated 400 deaths per year in Iowa are caused by radon-induced lung cancer. That is approximately the number of Iowans who die in traffic accidents each year. All of Iowa's 99 counties have the highest potential for radon levels and is the number one cause of lung cancer among non-smokers.   

Charlie Neibergall

This program originally aired on 04-04-19. 

During an extended stay in the intensive care unit of a hospital, it’s common for patients to experience delirium. They may begin to see or hear things that aren’t there, experience delusions, or suffer from extreme confusion.

“It can be very distressing to family members and loved ones because it’s an acute and drastic change from someone’s normal cognitive baseline,” says Dr. Nick Butler, a geriatrician at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics.

John Pemble / IPR file

Gov. Kim Reynolds will not pursue an executive order to ban vaping in Iowa. Instead, state health and education officials will focus on educational programs and a social media campaign warning minors of the health risks associated with e-cigarettes.

Toimetaja tõlkebüroo/Unsplash

The U.S. is in the midst of a mental health crisis, with 1 in 5 Americans experiencing mental illness each year. 

Mark Zdechlik / MPR News

Not since 2006 has Bigfork Valley Hospital taken in more money than it spent providing care. Despite the nonstop financial woes, it continues on and even makes expensive improvements. The hospital recently built a memory care wing called Aspen Circle. Inside, Frank Sinatra wafts from a CD player. The unit has the feel of a homey lodge. It is open and airy, yet secure, explained Bigfork Valley Hospital CEO Aaron Saude on a recent tour.

Seeking A Cure: The Quest To Save Rural Hospitals

Sep 30, 2019
Jim Slosiarek / The Gazette

Small rural Midwest community hospitals, squeezed by financial and regulatory pressures, are scaling back on services, merging with larger hospital systems and searching for other creative ways to survive in the short term, an Institute for Nonprofit News investigation by 12 news organizations in seven states revealed.

Kate Payne / IPR

The idea is pretty simple: prescribe fresh produce for conditions that are diet-related. 

Rachel Tayse / Flickr

 

Untreated sleep apnea can be devastating for health over a long period of time, according to Neurologist and Director of the University of Iowa Sleep Disorders Center Eric Dyken. Dyken joins host Ben Kieffer to give advice to people experiencing sleep problems and explain both the potential dangers of and treatments for sleep apnea. 

Kate Payne/IPR

Severe heat waves due to climate change are expected to pose an increasing threat to Iowa workers and residents. According to this year’s Iowa Climate Statement, a recent analysis released Wednesday, the state is slated to see dangerously hot weather in the coming decades.

Scott Webb / Unsplash

Satisfaction with your home can depend on its size compared to your neighbors' homes, according to new Iowa State University research. Dan Kuhlmann, assistant professor of community and regional planning, found that people are more likely to be dissatisfied with their house if it is smaller than their neighbors'.

John Pemble / IPR

 

More than 16 million people serve as unpaid caregivers for loved ones living with Alzheimer’s disease, which is the sixth leading cause of death in the U.S.. Caregivers face the difficult task of managing their loved one's health and daily lives as they increasingly lose touch with their memory and the world around them as a result of this irreversible brain disorder.

Marco Verch Professional / Flickr

More women are drinking alcohol -- and more of it -- than ever before. But why? Three researchers from  Iowa State University want to find out. 

Sima Dimitric

  This program originally aired on 2-21-18  .

With age and illness, taking care of necessary, day-to-day tasks can become impossible. Many elders who receive help are especially vulnerable to abuse from caretakers.

On this Talk of Iowa segment, Charity Nebbe chats with Celene Gogerty, Polk County Assistant Attorney, about what puts older adults at risk and how to prevent abuse.

“Nationalized studies have indicated that 10% of elders will be abused,” Gogerty says. Still, only about 4% of elder abuse is reported.  

Shirley Wang / IPR

 When a person takes their own life, survivors are left with so many questions. The first question is often, was there something I could have done to help? 

Rick Brewer / IPR

Tai chi is an ancient Chinese martial arts tradition that is healing Iowa veterans. When incorporated into rehabilitation programs, tai chi can bring veterans relief from anxiety, PTSD and physical ailments. 

Courtesy of CDC

An analysis by University of Iowa researchers has found a state-funded program for testing private wells suffers from “severe underutilization." The Grants To Counties program allocates funds each year for counties to test residents’ wells for certain kinds of contaminants. But in recent years counties have left unspent as much as 55 percent of the total funding.

University of Iowa College of Public Health

This program origionally aired 3-4-19.

The Iowa Cancer Registry's 2019 report shows new cases of most types of cancer are holding steady. Investigator Mary Charlton says the exception is cancers caused by the human papillomavirus or HPV.

Rick Brewer / IPR

Julie Knight met Julie Freese in a candy store in downtown Iowa City in the early 1980s. Knight had been battling Type 1 diabetes since she was ten years old and says she felt like one of the misfit toys from "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer." After moving into a house together on Ash Street the two Julies, of course, became even closer. But their relationship only grew stronger after parting ways in Iowa City.

FDA


Honza Soukup

This program originally aired on 1-10-18.

Pediatricians agree that breast milk is the healthiest source of nutrition for a newborn baby, and breast feeding rates are on the rise in the United States. But, nursing a baby isn’t always an option.

“Our daughter was full-term,” says Sarah Fillmore of Des Moines, “but she had to be in the NICU for about a week, and she had some breathing problems when she was born that made it difficult for her to learn how to latch.”

Carl Wycoff / Flickr

Volunteer fire and EMT services in the state, specifically in Iowa's rural areas, are struggling. Emergency specialists are aging out and retiring and there are not enough people to replace them. In some areas, the call response time is 30 minutes, long enough for a home to burn down.

Although there are private ambulance services in Iowa, there are some places where these services are no longer available because it isn't financially viable.

Madeleine King / IPR

Want to escape the daily grind of work and the news cycle but don't have time to bike across Iowa? All this week, IPR's Ben Kieffer is on RAGBRAI with Team No Pie Refused. Here's a photo recap of the ride so far.

robertsharp

This program originally aired on 11-21-17. 

We go through life surrounded by other people, but for many people, the isolation of the modern world takes a serious toll on health and happiness. During this hour of Talk of Iowa, host Charity Nebbe talks with Former Surgeon General Vivek Murthy about what he sees as an epidemic of loneliness in the U.S. 

"If you're not lonely, and you're listening to this radio segment, there are people around you who are," he says.

Clay Masters/IPR file photo

Local, state and federal officials have formed a working group to address Iowa’s PFAS contamination and any impacts to drinking water. Iowa is one of a number of states to grapple with the chemicals used at military bases and manufacturing sites.

Hans Reniers / Unsplash

Summer weather has settled across the Midwest - and that means heat. Homeless people, children and the elderly become more at-risk to dehydration and possible fatality as temperatures climb. 

Roey Ahram/Flickr Creative Commons

Iowa 1st District Congresswoman Abby Finkenauer is sponsoring legislation aimed at increasing pay for rural doctors serving Medicare patients. Advocates say a federal government policy of reimbursing doctors at lower rates in smaller and more remote communities is contributing to provider shortages. 

Heather Aitken

The cost of insulin has increased by 1,200% since the 1990's, and doubled in price between 2012 and 2016 alone. And as insulin prices steeply increase, many Iowans with diabetes feel the strain of accessing and affording this life-sustaining medication. When a sudden loss of insurance or financial strain comes in, the consequences can be devastating.

 

This program originally aired on October 9, 2018.

Palliative is one of the newest medical fields to date. With a focus on holistic physical, mental, and emotional pain management and support, palliative care seeks to reevaluate the way pain is understood and treated in our medical system.

 

John DC Anderson / https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/2.0/legalcode

This program originally aired on August 31, 2017.

In under three years, Mike Glenn went from needing glasses to complete vision loss. In this Talk of Iowa segment, host Charity Nebbe talks with guests about conditions that can lead to adult vision loss or severe impairment. Glenn lost his vision to diabetic retinopathy. Nebbe also talks with Archie Rodin who has gradually been losing his sight to macular degeneration.

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