public health

  In recent decades, America has been waging a veritable war on fat in which not just public health authorities, but every sector of society is engaged in constant “fat talk” aimed at educating, badgering, and ridiculing heavy people into shedding pounds. We hear a great deal about the dangers of fatness to the nation, but little about the dangers of today’s epidemic of fat talk to individuals and society at large. The human trauma caused by the war on fat is disturbing - and it is virtually unknown.

Susan Greenhalgh is Professor of Anthropology at Harvard University. In her book, Fat-Talk Nation, Greenhalgh shows how the war on fat has produced a generation of young people who are obsessed with their bodies and whose most fundamental sense of self comes from their size.

WAMC composite image by Dave Lucas

New York state health officials plan to announce this week the companies selected to operate medical marijuana dispensaries. A spokesperson for the state Department of Health says the agency intends to identify the winning applicants for five available dispensary licenses by Friday.

wikipedia

A train-rider who was found to have contracted measles has brought that distant Disneyland outbreak of the childhood disease home for many across the Northeast.

On Friday, the New York State Health Department disclosed that a Bard College student took a 1:20 p.m. Amtrak train from New York City's Penn Station to Albany and then to Niagara Falls the previous Sunday. The media got hold of the story and - pardon the pun - the news went viral, spread with headlines like "Thousands of commuters were potentially exposed to the disease by an infected Bard College student."

cleanhealthyny.org

A growing national awareness of dangerous, or so-called "toxic," toys on store shelves has sparked debate over how to protect children from products containing harmful substances.  The spotlight is shining on New York State, as local governments try to deal with the issue.

    Decisions made by the food, tobacco, alcohol, pharmaceutical, gun, and automobile industries have a greater impact on today's health than the decisions of scientists and policymakers. As the collective influence of corporations has grown, governments around the world have stepped back from their responsibility to protect public health by privatizing key services, weakening regulations, and cutting funding for consumer and environmental protection.

Land Of The Free And Home Of The Germs

Aug 15, 2013

If you’ve read the paper or watched the nightly news sometime in the past couple of weeks, you’ve probably noted what appears to be a disturbing trend. Specifically, there has been a rash (pun intended) of infectious disease outbreaks locally, nationally, and internationally.

Police in Utica spent the Fourth of July responding to two calls of people under the influence of bath salts, a drug that has become a growing problem across the country, but especially in parts of central New York where at least seven cases, including one fatality, have been reported since June. Madison County lawmakers have called on state officials to take immediate action, and there is discussion of a local law to make bath salts illegal. Madison County health director Eric Faisst says local law enforcement and health officials recently met to discuss bath salts.