Health & Science

Law Enforcement
1:16 am
Wed July 30, 2014

Groups Work to Combat Rise of Human Trafficking in W.Va.

Map of the locations of calls made to the National Human Trafficking Resource Center in 2013.
Credit Polaris

In Morgantown, law enforcement officials met to learn about human trafficking in West Virginia. Apparently, reports of trafficking in the state are on the rise, but that might be a good thing.


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New Federal Rule
5:06 pm
Tue July 29, 2014

MSHA Announces Plans for New Rule

Federal mine regulators are proposing a change in the criteria for civil penalties for health and safety violations. The Mine Safety and Health Administration Tuesday announced plans to publish a proposed new rule.

LISTEN

 

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Benefit
11:07 am
Mon July 28, 2014

Art Project to Aid Huntington Children's Hospital

The Hoops Family Children's Hospital in Huntington.
Credit Hoops Family Children's Hospital

A partnership will boost Huntington's train collection substantially next year.

The city is launching an art initiative with the Hoops Family Children's Hospital and the Cabell Huntington Hospital Auxiliary.
 
The Herald-Dispatch reports artists will use their skills on 40 fiberglass train engine statues that will go on display in Huntington next year.
 
Mayor Steve Williams says after the display, the trains then will be sold at auction to benefit the children's hospital.
 

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Community Gardens
10:57 pm
Fri July 25, 2014

New Urban Garden in Wheeling Designed For the Blind

Gardener Martin Wach built and planted the garden over a two-week period. And there's a lot of room for growth.
Credit Martin Wach

Wheeling has a new urban garden, and it’s a little out of the ordinary. It’s designed for visually impaired gardeners.  Not many like it exist in the state.


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Medical Board
10:15 am
Fri July 25, 2014

W.Va. Pain Clinic Operator Faces Disciplinary Hearing

Credit wikimedia commons

  A board will conduct a disciplinary hearing for the operator of a West Virginia pain management clinic where an investigation found syringes were being reused.

West Virginia Board of Osteopathic Medicine Executive Director Diana Shepard says the board will hold a conference call Friday for Dr. Roland Chalifoux Jr.

One of the board's options is to suspend Chalifoux's medical license.

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Testing Opposition
10:09 am
Fri July 25, 2014

PETA Opposes Using Animals in W.Va. Testing

Credit People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals

An animal rights group opposes plans to conduct testing on animals of chemicals that spilled into West Virginia's largest water supply using animals.

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals voiced concerns in a letter Thursday to Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin.

Wednesday, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention officials promised additional tests on rats, worms and zebra fish. They will cost up to $1.2 million and take up to a year.

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Forensic Science
3:17 pm
Wed July 23, 2014

Marshall Forensic Students on Top Again

Credit Marshall University

For the fifth time in eight years the Marshall University Forensic Science Graduate Program earned the highest overall test scores in the country.

The Marshall Forensic Science Graduate Program attracts students from all over the country. Take for instance Mackenzie Kilkeary, whose fondness for forensic science started with a weekly viewing of a NCIS.

It’s one of the many programs on TV that have produced what the forensic science administrators call the CSI effect.

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Health & Science
12:32 pm
Wed July 23, 2014

Feds Commit to Health Studies on Elk River Chemical Spill

Credit AP

Federal, state, and Kanawha county officials met Wednesday in U.S. Senator Joe  Manchin’s Washington D.C. office to pin down plans for more studies on the January 9 chemical spill at Freedom Industries. The announcement comes as a relief to those who’ve been pressing for this development since almost day one. 

Members of the Centers for Diseases Control and Prevention, the National Institute of Health, and the West Virginia Department and Health and Human Resources were part of the meeting.

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Bankruptcy
8:13 pm
Tue July 22, 2014

Judge Calls for W.Va. Chemical Spill Agreement

Credit Aaron Payne / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

  A bankruptcy judge is giving Freedom Industries, its insurer and stakeholders 10 days to strike an agreement on its $2.9 million insurance policy.

The company that contaminated West Virginia's largest water supply returned to bankruptcy court Tuesday in Charleston.

Freedom and 24 residents and businesses that sued after the spill proposed a $2.9 million settlement Friday using insurance. A board would pick projects benefiting the public to fund.

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Black Lung
5:16 pm
Tue July 22, 2014

Miners Can Wait Years for Black Lung Benefits, Congress Listens

Credit Jessica Lilly

 A retired coal miner who suffers from black lung disease has urged Congress to help clear a backlog of claims of fellow miners who have the disease. Princeton native Robert Bailey testified at the U.S. Senate Subcommittee on Employment and Workplace hosted a hearing Tuesday. The hearing focused on the struggles miners face while seeking black lung benefits. Lawmakers say the testimony on Capitol Hill was meant to do three things:

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News
1:39 pm
Tue July 22, 2014

Meningitis Diagnosis Prompted W.Va. Pain Clinic Probe

Credit Biggishben / wikimedia Commons

  A West Virginia health official says an investigation that found syringes were being reused at a pain management clinic was triggered after a patient developed bacterial meningitis.

Health officials in Ohio and West Virginia advised patients of Valley Pain Management in McMechen on Monday to be tested for blood-borne infectious diseases.

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Investigation
12:14 pm
Tue July 22, 2014

Doctor at W.Va. Pain Clinic had Texas License Revoked

Credit wikimedia commons

  The operator of a West Virginia pain management clinic where an investigation found needles were being reused on patients had his medical license revoked in Texas a decade ago.

Health officials in Ohio and West Virginia advised patients of Valley Pain Management in McMechen on Monday to be tested for blood-borne infectious diseases after an investigation found needles and syringes were reused to administer pain medications and saline solutions.

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Public Health
2:02 pm
Mon July 21, 2014

DHHR Warns of Possible HIV Exposure at Northern Panhandle Pain Clinic

Credit wikimedia commons

Health officials are advising patients of a clinic in in the northern panhandle to be tested for some infectious diseases after an investigation discovered questionable practices.

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Lose the Training Wheels
2:12 pm
Thu July 17, 2014

Special Needs Kids Learn What it Takes to Ride a Bike

Garrett Howard learns the right balance to ride a two-wheeled bike.
Credit Clark Davis

As easy as riding a bike – that’s how the old saying goes. But for kids with special needs it can be tough. This week, a day-camp in Huntington has been helping children with developmental disabilities learn how to ride on their own.  

Garrett Howard is an 11-year-old boy from nearby Meigs County, Ohio. He has down syndrome and wants to learn how to ride a bike.

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Healthy Children
12:28 pm
Wed July 16, 2014

Youth Program Provides Home Away From Home

REACHH children learn yoga
Credit Jessica Lilly

While you would think all children would be excited to be away from school this summer, many throughout the state continue to go. 

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Medical Examinations
2:59 pm
Sun July 13, 2014

Understaffing Delays West Virginia Autopsy Reports

Credit Ralf Roletschek / http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/3.0/

  Law enforcement officials say understaffing is delaying autopsy reports from the West Virginia Medical Examiner's Office.

The Charleston Gazette reports that three of the office's six medical examiner's positions are vacant.

Putnam County prosecutor Mark Sorsaia says waiting for autopsy reports can delay cases.

Regional Jail Authority director Joe DeLong also is concerned. In cases involving inmate deaths, DeLong says there's only so much that corrections officials can do until they have records from the Medical Examiner's Office.

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Health
12:49 pm
Fri July 11, 2014

With School Starting Soon, It's Time to Boost Vaccinations

Credit Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

The West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources urges parents to take action to ensure children have the proper vaccinations before school starts.  

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Cancer Research
3:17 pm
Thu July 10, 2014

What Is Canalization?

Credit Marshall University

Marshall University professor Vincent Sollars recently received a $432,000 grant from the National Cancer Institute for his unique cancer research. It involves something called canalization.

Dr. Sollars is an associate professor in the Marshall University School of Medicine. He’s taking an unusual approach to find better treatments for cancer.

“In the end what we’re looking at is making life better for people that have this deadly disease, that’s the main reason I became a scientist,” Sollars said.

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Chemical Spill
1:27 pm
Thu July 10, 2014

Study: MCHM Could Be More Toxic Than Previously Thought

Credit AP

  A new study shows a chemical that spilled into West Virginia's biggest drinking water supply in January could be more toxic than a previous test indicated. But the researcher behind the study cautions there are differences between his tests and earlier studies.

University of South Alabama researcher Dr. Andrew Whelton released the findings Thursday from crude MCHM toxicity tests on freshwater fleas.

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Science
10:16 am
Wed July 9, 2014

USGS Study: Mountaintop Removal Mining Impacts Fish Populations

This creek chub (Semotilus atromaculatus) collected by Than Hitt and Doug Chambers downstream from MTM operations shows classic signs of selenium toxicity (spinal abnormality).
Credit Submitted Photo / U.S. Geological Survey

Mountaintop removal mining does have an effect on fish populations downstream from the mining operations, according to a study just released by the U.S. Geological Survey.

The study title is a mouthful: Temporal changes in taxonomic and functional diversity of fish assemblages downstream from mountaintop mining, which is the fancy way of saying USGS scientists looked at how well fish populations are doing in streams down river from mountaintop mining sites.

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