Health

Recent Stories

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    County proposes Kern Medical Center-Kern Health Systems merger

    County officials are unveiling a new plan to help rescue Kern Medical Center: a merger with Kern Health Systems. Under the carefully crafted proposal, the struggling county hospital and the successful public health insurance management...

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    California teen births fall, but Kern's is among state's highest

    Kern County has the second highest teen birth rate in California, according to new numbers released this week. Kern had a birth rate of 53.4 births per every 1,000 females ages 15-19, second only to Tulare County's just higher 53.7, the...

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    ASK EMILY: Months after applying, legions stuck waiting for Medi-Cal

    "One stop shop." "No wrong door." State officials have used those phrases since last year to describe the new, easier, more efficient Medi-Cal application process. But something happened between their mouths and reality: "A hole fell...

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    First cuts announced at KMC; more coming

    The first cut won't be the deepest. On Monday Kern Medical Center CEO Russell Judd announced plans to terminate the home health care and outpatient physical therapy departments at the county hospital in August. It's only the first cut...

  5. County leads effort to prevent suicide

    Middle-aged men, veterans and the elderly are among key demographic groups people working to prevent suicide need to do a better job of reaching, a group of mental health advocates concluded Wednesday. About 40 social workers, counselors,...

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    THE PULSE: Keeping tabs on health & wellness issues

    PAIN GRANTS, RESEARCH: There's a new, central location where people can look at the latest research on pain, regardless of what's causing it. Six federal agencies have jointly formed the Interagency Pain Research Portfolio, a database...

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    Pictures of pathology: 3-D medical images improve local health care

    Shortly after a very pregnant Joanne McCain bared her swollen belly for Baby Sightings sonographer Cherry Hernandez, the image of a fetus emerged on a large, flat-screen monitor. It wasn't the grainy, black and white ultrasound most...

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    Study finds 'modest' cost increase to state to give undocumented Medi-Cal

    A new study has found it wouldn't cost much to extend the Affordable Care Act's expanded Medi-Cal coverage to the state's illegal immigrants, but critics are dubious. The analysis was done as SB 1005, or the Health for All Act, is pending...

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    THE PULSE: Whooping cough is on the rise

    WHOOPING COUGH SURGE: The state is warning parents and health care providers that whooping cough is on the rise. There were 1,711 cases of the highly contagious bacterial disease reported to the state from January through April of this...

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    Supervisors approve sharp ambulance rate hikes

    An ambulance ride in nearly all of Kern County will cost substantially more after Tuesday. County supervisors on Tuesday approved substantial rate increases for Hall Ambulance and Liberty Ambulance -- the two companies that have exclusive...

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    ASK EMILY: Network nightmares: When your doctor and hospital don't mix

    What good is it to have a health plan if you can't find doctors and hospitals to accept it? That question rushes to mind every time a frustrated reader writes in to describe his or her Kafkaesque quest to find care. I'm also hearing from...

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    Oh, the places they'll go! Dr. Seuss art to adorn children's hospital

    Clinging to her father's arm for support, Blanca Caballeros walked tentatively down a hallway in the Lauren Small Children's Medical Center at Bakersfield Memorial Hospital. Blanca, 12, was a little unsteady two days after surgery for...

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    One in three hospitalized patients are diabetic, according to study

    Patients with diabetes comprise nearly a third of all hospitalizations in both Kern County and the state of California, according to a new study from the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research. UCLA looked at statewide hospital discharge...

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