Health & Medicine

Health, Medicine

Elizabeth Gabriel

As the number of vape deaths continues to rise—two of which were in Oregon—the future of vaping concerns many Oregonians. But were certain groups targeted to begin vaping the first place?

This week’s City Club of Eugene: Suicide as a Public Health Emergency, contains descriptions that some listeners might find disturbing. About 15 minutes in to the show we’ll hear from a suicide survivor who recounts a suicide attempt that includes graphic depictions. If you or anyone you know is in trouble or has any questions about getting help, the Suicide Prevention Lifeline can be reached at 1-800-273-8255.

From the City Club of Eugene:

Lane County Health and Human Services

Lane County public health officials are seeing a dramatic rise in syphilis cases this year. They say the highly communicable disease is spreading because people just aren’t getting tested.

Lane County

Last year, Oregon Governor Kate Brown declared substance abuse addiction a public health crisis. Since then, Portland, Medford, Jackson County, and Klamath County have followed suit. Today Lane County joined in, but not without debate. 

Provided by Hank Stern / Senator Ron Wyden's Office

As the vaping industry continues to reel from a string of user fatalities and illness, Oregon Democratic Senator Ron Wyden is pushing a federal tax on e-cigarettes.

Jennifer Versteeg, CPS

Opioid overdose is a deadly risk for anyone using or misusing the drug. With that in mind, Lincoln County Health and Human Services has partnered with the Confederated Tribes of Siletz Indians, Springfield Treatment Center and Max’s Mission to provide free “overdose rescue kits” and education on how to use them.

Oregon Nurses Association

Hundreds of nurses and their supporters took to the streets in Corvallis Friday to demonstrate against staffing and safety problems at Good Samaritan Medical Center. This week, the nurses’ union continues to negotiate labor terms with the hospital.

Melorie Begay/KLCC News

After hearing testimony from several recovering addicts, the Eugene City Council is looking into declaring a public health crisis over substance abuse addiction. 

Centers for Disease Control

Oregon retailers have done better this year in refusing to sell tobacco to minors. But state inspections found one product with a very high rate of illegal sales.

The state uses underage buyers as decoys to see if stores peddling tobacco will sell it to minors without checking IDs. In just over 1,000 inspections, about 16 percent of retailers failed the test…that’s down slightly from the year before.

PeaceHealth Oregon

Donors and community leaders toured a new 20-room patient family guest house Thursday on the PeaceHealth RiverBend campus in Springfield.

Brian Bull / KLCC

Pharmaceutical prices are too high, says U.S. Senator Ron Wyden.  As KLCC’s Brian Bull reports, the Oregon Democrat has been visiting drug stores around the state touting a bipartisan plan to tackle costs.

Chris Lehman / KLCC

Public health officials in Oregon are asking medical professionals to be on the lookout for severe respiratory illnesses among people who use e-cigarettes.

Oregon Department of Environmental Quality

A new law signed this month by Oregon Gov. Kate Brown will require pharmaceutical companies to create a statewide prescription drug take-back program. The goal is to prevent unused medication from ending in landfills, waterways or in the hands of people it isn’t meant for.

Some pharmacies and police stations already allow people to drop off their unwanted medicine, but the new law will require a robust statewide prescription take-back program, funded by the pharmaceutical industry.

Clinical research funding for Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders remains stagnant compared to the National Institutes of Health’s overall budget, according to a recent study.

Tiffany Eckert

At the end of this month, PeaceHealth will close its free-standing Nurse Midwifery Birth Center in Springfield. Despite public outcry, hospital administration has shown no sign of changing the decision they announced on May 7th. As KLCC’s Tiffany Eckert reports, some expectant mothers are now having to make new birth plans and decide where and with whom they will deliver their babies.

Tiffany Eckert

At the end of this month, PeaceHealth will close its free-standing Nurse Midwifery Birth Center in Springfield. Despite public outcry, hospital administration has shown no sign of changing the decision they announced on May 7th.

Lincoln County Health and Human Services has confirmed several cases of pertussis, or whooping cough, in the area.

Tiffany Eckert

A Lane County teen, who lost his friend to suicide, has started a non-profit to focus on the issue. We first met this young man earlier this year as part of our series on Suicide Loss.

Tiffany Eckert / KLCC

A medical non-profit facility in Eugene has expanded its hours and added a doctor. As KLCC’s Brian Bull reports, this means the White Bird Clinic is now open to more Medicare patients.

PeaceHealth opened a same-day clinic in South Eugene on July 22nd.

Looking Glass

Last month, Looking Glass opened its newly remodeled Regional Crisis Center, which offers residential mental health treatment to vulnerable youth in Lane County.

Planned Parenthood Southwestern Oregon

PeaceHealth has remained steadfast in its plan to close the Nurse Midwifery Birth Center in Springfield, at the end of August. Thousands of Lane County residents have petitioned against the move. Now, members of the medical community have added their voices.

PeaceHealth Nurse Midwifery Birth Center

Lane County commissioners heard public comments Tuesday night from several people protesting the planned closure of Peacehealth’s Nurse Midwifery Birth Center in Springfield.

Rachael McDonald

The White Bird Clinic provides free or low cost health care for people with low incomes in the Eugene area. They've also been taking care of people's mental and physical health at the Oregon Country Fair since the first fair in 1969. 

Oregon Legislature

Starting in January, a new Oregon law will require pharmacies to provide visually-impaired patients with a device that’s programmed to read prescription information out loud.

The units are called prescription readers. They read a chip applied to medication bottles and convey information about dosage, side effects, refills, etc.

270-thousand children across Oregon will now get comprehensive vision screening in public school districts and preschools.


Chris Lehman / KLCC

Oregon lawmakers have decided not to regulate kratom, a drug widely sold at convenience stores.

Oregon lawmakers are moving forward with a bill that would provide free in-home visits from nurses to parents of newborn babies. 

With temperatures in the Willamette Valley hitting the mid-90s, medical providers and safety officials warn citizens to take precautions before exposing themselves to harsh weather.

Kaiser Permanente Northwest

Kaiser Permanente Northwest entered the Lane County health care market in 2016. The medical provider now serves about 5,000 members in the Eugene-Springfield area as well as over 17-hundred Medicaid patients.

Kaiser recently announced plans to expand and relocate to a new medical office in north Eugene.

Spokeswoman Kimberly Mounts says the space will be about six times larger than their current office and will offer new services like on-site labs and imaging.   

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