Side Effects Public Media

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We're a health news initiative exploring the impacts of place, policy and economics on America's health. Our reporting sheds light on root causes of community-wide health problems—from chronic disease, to mental health and addiction, to infant mortality—and on new efforts to solve them.

We are headquartered at WFYI Public Media in Indianapolis, and work in partnership with KBIA in Columbia, Missouri; St. Louis Public Radio; Illinois Public Media in Champaign-Urbana, Illinois; WNIN in Evansville, Indiana; and WOSU Public Media, in Columbus, Ohio. We also work with contributing reporters from other public radio stations around the Midwest and Great Lakes regions. We're intent on telling stories from under-covered communities and hidden-away places.

Series

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An unusual court in Columbus, Ohio, offers a therapeutic approach instead of a punitive one to sex workers. In this two-part series, we hear the story of Stephanie Rollins' recovery from two decades of addiction and sex work, and the judge who offered her a new path for her life.

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4 Pieces

This series explores the health needs and concerns of foster children.

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2 Pieces

In 2007, 12,000 inmates with mental illness sued the Illinois Department of Corrections, alleging the agency punishes inmates with mental illness instead of properly treating them. A settlement was reached in 2016, when the state agreed to revamp mental health care and provide better treatment. But a federal judge has ruled that care remains “grossly insufficient” and “extremely poor.”

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4 Pieces

In the grips of an opioid addiction epidemic, many communities are increasing efforts to prevent overdose or stem the easy access to drugs. Meanwhile, long-term recovery for many people struggling with drug or alcohol addiction remains elusive. Despite advances, addiction has strikingly high relapse rates. This series explores obstacles that hold people back from treatment and new approaches to care that can help people stay well in the long term

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3 Pieces

Sick is a podcast about the things that can happen to our bodies—and how we respond.

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50 Pieces

Our health journalism collaborative explores the impacts of place, policy and economics on Americans' health.

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5 Pieces

Personal experiences of people in recovery shared at a live storytelling event in Indianapolis.


Pieces

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A small but growing number of U.S. women are choosing to have their babies at home. In more than 30 states, including most of the Midwest, it’s leg...

  • Added: Mar 22, 2019
  • Length: 03:34
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Across much of the Midwest, maternal and infant death rates are high -- especially among African-Americans. So doctors, public health agencies and ...

  • Added: Mar 15, 2019
  • Length: 03:37
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The CDC reports nearly 160 cases of measles have been confirmed nationwide since the start of the year. Four cases are in Illinois, in Champaign-Ur...

  • Added: Mar 15, 2019
  • Length: 03:44
Caption: Perry State Forest in southeast Ohio could be the site of a proposed strip mine, unless residents succeed in opposing the proposal., Credit: PAIGE PFLEGER / WOSU
Residents of Ohio’s Perry County, about an hour south east of Columbus, say life there is peaceful, in large part because of their neighbor: a 4,50...

  • Added: Mar 15, 2019
  • Length: 03:59
Caption: The campus of Mount Carmel West in Columbus, Ohio., Credit: GABE ROSENBERG / WOSU
Experts often blame the painkiller fentanyl for skyrocketing overdose deaths among illegal drug users. Now a series of deaths at an Ohio hospital i...

  • Added: Mar 14, 2019
  • Length: 04:06
Caption: Kathi Arbini holds a photograph of her son, Kevin Mullane, who died of a heroin overdose at the age of 21., Credit: SEBASTIÁN MARTÍNEZ VALDIVIA/SIDE EFFECTS PUBLIC MEDIA
The opioid crisis has hit American communities hard. States have responded by creating databases to keep track of prescriptions, so people can’t go...

Bought by WRST-FM Oshkosh


  • Added: Feb 27, 2019
  • Length: 03:53
  • Purchases: 1
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Research shows African-Americans are less likely to access treatment for mental illness. Cultural norms and the stigma associated with having a men...

Bought by WRST-FM Oshkosh


  • Added: Feb 26, 2019
  • Length: 03:40
  • Purchases: 1
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Obesity is a big problem across the U-S -- it affects about 40 percent of the population. And it’s even worse in Midwest states like Ohio, Illinois...

  • Added: Feb 21, 2019
  • Length: 03:27
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Health officials say teenagers are using e-cigarettes at epidemic rates. Lawmakers in a number of Midwest states, like Indiana, Illinois and Minnes...

  • Added: Feb 19, 2019
  • Length: 03:20
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Increasingly, sports teams, especially in the NBA, are hiring "sleep coaches" to help players. This follows research that good sleep can be as bene...

  • Added: Feb 12, 2019
  • Length: 03:06