Health & Science

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A Northern Panhandle pain doctor is suing two state government agencies after he was stripped of his medical license and his clinic was closed.

The Charleston Gazette-Mail reports that Dr. Roland Chalifoux is suing the West Virginia Bureau for Public Health and a medical board. The suit states their actions forced him into debt and damaged his reputation.

The civil action filed in Marshall County Circuit Court seeks lost wages and damages.

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A Huntington church cancelled services following a fire that damaged the building.

Media outlets report that the fire broke out early Sunday morning at Johnson Memorial United Methodist Church.

West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources

The West Virginia Public Health Impact Task Force has approved the final version of a plan to redefine the mission of public health in the state and work more effectively with communities.

quickfacts.census.gov

The latest estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau show West Virginia was one of seven states to lose population.

According to figures released Tuesday, West Virginia lost 4,623 residents between July 2014 and July 2015. The 0.25 percent dip was the highest in the nation.

Woodburn Hall
http://history.wvu.edu/r/images/homepage/13223

West Virginia University's governing board has responded to a wrongful death lawsuit brought by the family of a student who died following a hazing for a fraternity that had its charter revoked.

Coal Layoffs, unemployed
Jessica Lilly / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Alpha Natural Resources continues to scale back its coal-mining operations.

Workers were told Friday at mines in West Virginia and Virginia that they were being laid off. The total in both states is more than 160, with the majority occurring in West Virginia, according to media reports.

Axiall Corporation / axiall.com

Axiall Corp. says eight contract workers injured in a boiler accident at its Natrium plant in West Virginia have been released from the hospital.

The company says two other workers were expected to be released on Wednesday. Another worker remained hospitalized under observation.

Doctor Patient Health Care Coverage
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Federal officials are extending the amount of time West Virginians have to sign up for health insurance through the HealthCare.gov website. 

HealthCare.gov CEO Kevin Counihan made the announcement in a press release Wednesday.

Kara Lofton / WVPB

The most common way children are exposed to lead these days is from the lead-based paint almost universally found in homes built before 1980. (Lead-based paint was outlawed in the late ’70s.)

When the paint deteriorates and chips, it causes dust particles that can be inhaled or even eaten (think slobbery teething toy belonging to a 10-month-old on the floor next to an old baseboard covered in lead-based paint).

Federal officials say more than 11,000 West Virginia residents have signed up for the health insurance marketplace during the open enrollment period that began Nov. 1.

Against the recommendation of its mayor, the Charleston City Council has passed a resolution banning smoking in all city parks and playgrounds.

The Charleston Gazette-Mail reports that Mayor Danny Jones cast the lone dissenting vote Monday. Jones says enforcing the new policy will be nearly impossible.

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West Virginia ranks 24th in the country in funding programs to prevent kids from smoking and help smokers quit, according to a national report released today by a coalition of public health organizations. 

Andrew Carroll / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

A team of researchers at West Virginia University is creating a unique portrait of the Mountain State. The Historic Timbers Project is unveiling West Virginia’s human and environmental history one dusty old barn at a time.

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Parkersburg News & Sentinel

A southeast Ohio water district has settled its federal lawsuit against DuPont over allegations that the company contaminated the district's well fields with the chemical used to produce Teflon.

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West Virginia has the highest rate of youth drug overdose deaths in the country, according to a new national report.

The study, produced by the non-profit Trust for America’s Health, found that nationwide, youth drug overdose deaths have more than doubled among people aged 12-25.

Opiate Addiction Sometimes Begins in the Womb

Nov 24, 2015
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Neonatal abstinence syndrome, or NAS as it’s known in the medical community, is yet another problem that stems from the heroin epidemic ravaging West Virginia. NAS occurs in newborns exposed to opiates while still in the womb. When they’re born, they feel the full effects of withdrawal.

Health care professionals are now trying to come up with ways to track and deal with the problem more effectively.

Jesse Wright / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Nov. 20 marks the anniversary of the 1968 Farmington Mine Disaster, which killed 78 men. It was the worst U.S. mine disaster in 50 years. On Sunday, a crowd of about 150 people gathered at the memorial of the Farmington Mine Disaster.

Liz McCormick / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Two weeks after President Obama’s visit to West Virginia, aimed at putting the spotlight on substance abuse issues across the country, the state’s leaders are still talking about ways to combat the issue.

At a forum in Martinsburg, Governor Tomblin met with those struggling with the disease and others trying to provide assistance in the Eastern Panhandle.

National Governors Association

With President Obama’s visit to Charleston just two short weeks ago, people and organizations across the state have responded to the President’s call to fight drugs and overdose deaths in West Virginia.

On Wednesday, Governor Tomblin continues this fight and travels to Martinsburg to host a summit with law enforcement and the community on substance abuse in the area.

Doctor Patient Health Care Coverage
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Acuity Specialty Hospital Ohio Valley plans a $1 million expansion of its long-term acute care facility in Wheeling.

The West Virginia Health Care Authority has issued a certificate of need for the project. The certificate allows Acuity to add 16 beds to its 13-bed facility within Wheeling Hospital.

A date for the expansion hasn't been set. Acuity director Joe Garcuccio told The Intelligencer and Wheeling News-Register that the project is in the planning stage.

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