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California Watch

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More best health stories of the year from the Antidote Blog.

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The journalists at California Watch have created a simple, yet powerful way to visually tell the story of a woman they couldn't reveal.

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Nearly every day, Arleen Hernandez battles an aging septic tank that backs up into her toilet and shower. Upon moving to Parklawn in 1986, she didn’t realize her new neighborhood lacks basic public services.

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Prime Healthcare, says that it has to bill Medicare for kwashiorkor when doctors there find someone with a protein deficiency. Antidote talked to one of the leading experts on kwashiorkor, who offered some surprising insights.

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Was Prime Healthcare gaming the Medicare billing system with obscure diagnoses? Or was it just playing by the rules? Here are three questions to ponder.

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Hospital execs in Northern California leak private patient records to the media. Why? Because the patient dared talk to a reporter.

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It’s not easy for journalists to undertake testing on humans, nor should it be. But there are stories and situations where it is definitely warranted. Veteran journalist Janet Wilson draws from her own reporting experience to offer tips for your own work.

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In the Friday edition of the Daily Briefing we bring you news about the death of Jack Kevorkian, a report on race and health care, new ideas about AIDS, a toilet story and great listening for your weekend.

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Picture a honey sunrise glistening across the Pacific. A wave rises up, lifting a golden surfer, hair flapping in the wind like a flag as he negotiates a perfect turn and glides toward the beach. He steps onto the sand and his smile falls. Among the women in bikinis and men playing volleyball is a horrible scene of human suffering: a throng of senior citizens in wheel chairs, their bellies distended from malnutrition, flies landing on their eyelids, which are too sapped of any strength even to blink them away.

Picture of Barbara Feder Ostrov

As 2011 unfolds, I’d like to share some of my favorite health journalism – much but not all of it policy-related – from 2010. This is definitely not a best-of list, but rather journalism that can inspire and teach us.

Here are my first five picks, in no particular order of importance. I’ll share the next five next week.

Happy New Year!

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Got a great idea for an ambitious reporting project on a California health issue?  Let us fund it.  Apply now for the 2019 California Fellowship, which provides $1,000 reporting grants and six months of expert mentoring to 20 journalists, community engagement grants of up to $2,000, specialized mentoring, to five.

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