What's Happening

Health Care

Medical professionals share challenges, urgent needs with lawmakers as COVID-19 cases rise

By Alanna Joyner / March 31, 2020

According to the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, North Carolina currently has 1,498 confirmed coronavirus cases across the state. As cases continue to rise, medical professionals remain concerned about lack of protective equipment, medical supplies and the potential for hospitals across the state to become overwhelmed by patients.  At the first meeting…

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Coronavirus reveals vulnerabilities within states like N.C. that rejected Medicaid expansion

By Alanna Joyner / March 30, 2020

Uninsured people within the 14 states, including North Carolina, that have not expanded Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act, could face numerous challenges as COVID-19 cases increase. Almost 5 million people across the country are without access to health care coverage and states that have turned down billions of federal dollars that would have come…

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Area hospitals seek donated protective gear, medical supplies amid pandemic. Here’s how to help.

By Alanna Joyner / March 25, 2020

As coronavirus cases continue to surge across the nation, hospitals in every state are dealing with the stressful demand to combat the virus, but with limited resources. North Carolina hospitals, along with others around the country, are asking for donations of medical supplies, especially personal protective equipment, or PPE, for health care providers.   Health care…

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Senate passes ‘Families First Coronavirus Response Act’

By Alanna Joyner / March 23, 2020

A second coronavirus emergency aid package came into law last week, named the Families First Coronavirus Response Act. The latest package includes a federal emergency paid-leave benefits program, free COVID-19 testing for the public and expanded unemployment benefits. The first emergency bill allocated over $8 billion for coronavirus prevention, preparation, and response efforts across the…

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WRAL: Secretary Cohen tells legislators what they can’t handle — The Truth

By Alanna Joyner / March 12, 2020

Due to Gov. Roy Cooper’s veto of the General Assembly’s proposed state budget, North Carolina avoided more than $42 million in cuts that would have left numerous agencies vulnerable during the coronavirus outbreak. A dramatically shrunken budget and staff cuts prompted by the state budget, would have strained the state’s Health and Human Services, the…

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State should make sure ALL in need are tested for coronavirus

By Alanna Joyner / March 10, 2020

Last week, Congress approved an $8.3 billion emergency spending package in an effort to combat the coronavirus. Almost $13 million has been set aside for emergency aid for North Carolina as local health officials prepare for the outbreak.  Across the country, some states are setting aside funds to waive fees for patients who lack healthcare…

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North Carolina watchfully prepares for spread of coronavirus

By Alanna Joyner / March 9, 2020

Last week, two cases of the coronavirus were confirmed by North Carolina state officials. The two cases, which are unrelated, are the first cases for the state as COVID-19 continues to spread across the country. Gov. Roy Cooper announced last week that the N.C. State Laboratory of Public Health can test for the virus. Cooper…

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The continuing domino effect of North Carolina’s rejection of Medicaid expansion

By Alanna Joyner / February 27, 2020

A recent state-by-state report by The Kaiser Family foundation, found that North Carolina, the 10th largest state in the nation, is fairing worse than the national average in health care.  With 33.5 percent of North Carolina residents below 200% of the Federal Poverty level in 2018, Medicaid is much-needed for those without financial accessibility.  In…

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2019 was the worst year for rural hospital closures this decade, a new report finds

By Alanna Joyner / February 21, 2020

According to a new report from the Chartis Center for Rural Health, 19 rural hospitals closed across America in 2019. Almost one out of every four open rural hospitals are at risk of closing in the near future. States like North Carolina, that have chosen not to expand Medicaid have experienced the most rural hospital…

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NC Health News: Mental health advocates use gathering to push for funding, priorities

By Alanna Joyner / February 5, 2020

On Saturday, hundreds of mental health advocates raised questions about the priorities and concerns of the mental health community in North Carolina.  The 42nd annual Mental Health Legislative Breakfast at UNC Chapel Hill, brought over 400 health providers, advocates and consumers into a discussion to make state lawmakers aware of the need for improved and…

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