Health Make-A-Thon Supports Illinois Residents With Ideas For Improving Health Care

URBANA – People who have navigated tough situations in health care often have the best ideas for how to improve the system.  The goal of the Carle Illinois College of Medicine Health Make-a-Thon competition is to provide the support that everyday people need to help bring those ideas to life. The competition is organized by […]

Q&A: How To Clear Your Cannabis Arrest Record Without Waiting For Automatic Expungement

Nearly half a million cannabis arrest records were expunged in the first year of recreational cannabis legalization in Illinois. Ten counties, including Peoria and Knox, are years ahead of schedule in automatically expunging all eligible records. But for other communities, that process is still ongoing. Tim Shelley spoke with Teri Ross, executive director of Illinois Legal […]

‘C-U At Austin’s Place’ Emergency Women’s Shelter Moves To New Permanent Home

CHAMPAIGN – An emergency women’s shelter in Champaign, “C-U at Austin’s Place,” is now operating out of a new permanent location. Starting 13 years ago as a grassroots mission effort by Champaign’s First United Methodist Church, the Austin’s Place women’s shelter has been operating lately out of local churches. In the past year, the shelter […]

Slow Coronavirus Vaccine Rollout Continues In Illinois, As More Become Eligible

URBANA – Supply chain issues and logistical challenges are causing the rollout of the coronavirus vaccine in Illinois to move slower than expected. But the vaccine is now going out to older adults in some parts of the state. The first phase of the state’s rollout of the vaccine included both health care personnel and […]

We Know How To Increase Access to HIV/AIDS Testing. Can Those Strategies Work For COVID-19?

URBANA – The COVID-19 pandemic has shone a spotlight on long-standing racial disparities, when it comes to access to health care and other resources.  People of color, who are overrepresented among essential workers and in low-income communities, have been disproportionately hurt by the virus and are among those in need of better access to coronavirus […]

New Central Illinois Clinic Aims To Reduce ER Visits For Patients In Mental Health Crisis

SPRINGFIELD – A central Illinois hospital system recently launched a new mental health crisis clinic, which aims to meet the growing need for services amidst the pandemic while reducing pressure on local hospital emergency departments. Rates of anxiety and depression appear to be rising during the pandemic, according to federal data. The U.S. Centers for […]

ER Staff Among The First To Get The Coronavirus Vaccine In Champaign County

URBANA – The process of vaccinating the first few hundred hospital workers in Champaign County began Thursday.  In the first shipment, Carle Foundation Hospital in Urbana received 400 doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech coronavirus vaccine for its staff. OSF Heart of Mary Medical Center in Urbana received 50 doses. Since doses are limited, hospitals are prioritizing […]

United Way: There’s No Shortage Of Ways To Give Back In Champaign County

CHAMPAIGN – The United Way of Champaign County hopes residents who are able to give back to the community will consider doing so this holiday season. The organization has compiled a list of local holiday giving opportunities. They include adopt-a-family programs that pair people with families who have specific needs, as well as collection drives […]

Kirby Medical Center Among Rural Hospitals Facing COVID-19 Challenges

MONTICELLO – Rural hospitals in Illinois face unique challenges as COVID-19 continues to surge across the state. Many don’t have an intensive care unit, so patients who need a higher level of care must be transferred elsewhere.  Pat Schou, executive director of the Illinois Critical Access Hospital Network – an association of more than 50 rural […]

‘A Lot Of Us Are Tired’: Illinois Hospitals Bracing For An Even Worse Second Wave

EVANSTON – Across Illinois, more than 80% of all ICU beds are now occupied, according to data from the state’s department of public health.  The recent uptick in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations is raising concerns among state leaders and public health officials about hospitals potentially filling up in the coming weeks.  Dr. Ernest Wang, past-president […]

Illinois Hospitals Face Ethical Questions: ‘If Everybody’s At Capacity, What Do You Do Then?’

URBANA – Across Illinois’ Region 6, which includes 21 counties in east-central Illinois, hospitals have less than 30% capacity remaining in their medical-surgical and intensive care units, local health officials reported this week. Hospitals are filling up with COVID-19 patients as rates of community transmission rise throughout the region, says Champaign-Urbana Public Health Administrator Julie […]