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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3 Pieces

In rural America, older people face more health issues, like chronic illness, mental illness and complications from loneliness and isolation. This series looks into those issues in rural Kentucky.

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0 Pieces

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

Caption: Protesters gather on Monument Circle to protest Gateway to Work., Credit: CARTER BARRETT/SIDE EFFECTS PUBLIC MEDIA.
Starting July 1, tens of thousands of people who receive health insurance through Indiana’s Medicaid expansion are required to report work hours or...

  • Added: Jul 08, 2019
  • Length: 03:47
Caption: This photograph by Henry Domke of a waterlily has sold more than 150 times to clinics and hospitals nation-wide., Credit: HENRY DOMKE / PHOTO PROVIDED
Domke developed his art into a business. He’s since sold prints for more than 340 installations in hospitals and clinics from Connecticut to Califo...

Bought by WHCP-LP


  • Added: Jul 08, 2019
  • Length: 04:23
  • Purchases: 1
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When José moved his family to the U.S. from Mexico nearly two decades ago, he had hopes of giving his children a better life. But now he worries a...

  • Added: Jun 26, 2019
  • Length: 04:06
Caption: Dr. Jonathan Gottlieb, IU Health's Chief Medical Officer, Credit: LEIGH DENOON
As the opioid epidemic continues, hospitals are looking for new ways to treat pain and combat addiction. At Indiana University Health, which has 16...

  • Added: Jun 26, 2019
  • Length: 04:18
Caption: Karen Simms speaks to a group gathered on Friday, May 17, 2019, at the Champaign Community Coalition's first "violence response forum" at Jericho Missionary Baptist Church in Champaign., Credit: CHRISTINE HERMAN/ILLINOIS PUBLIC MEDIA
Losing a loved one to gun violence can cause anxiety, stress and other mental health symptoms. So can simply living in an environment where violenc...

  • Added: Jun 24, 2019
  • Length: 03:32
Caption: Actors, community members and researchers joined a talk-back after the performance of One Blood., Credit: JILL SHERIDAN/IPB NEWS
African American women in Indiana face disparities in healthcare and health outcomes. They are more likely to die during or after childbirth then w...

  • Added: Jun 24, 2019
  • Length: 03:55
Caption: Deepa Halaharvi is a breast cancer surgeon at Ohio Health., Credit: PAIGE PFLEGER / WOSU
When you go to the doctor, there is a pretty good chance that person wasn’t born in the United States. There are thousands of foreign-born doctors ...

  • Added: Jun 20, 2019
  • Length: 04:12
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More and more states are adopting so-called Red Flag Laws in an attempt to curb gun violence. These laws allow police to confiscate guns in an emer...

  • Added: Jun 20, 2019
  • Length: 04:05
Caption: Gene Emerson, who goes to the Casey County Senior Center., Credit: LISA GILLESPIE/SIDE EFFECTS PUBLIC MEDIA
Loneliness in older adults can lead to serious health problems. This is especially an issue in rural America, where seniors may be more isolated. S...

Bought by WAMC


  • Added: Jun 05, 2019
  • Length: 03:54
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: Dennis Pond and his wife Gay pose in their home in Casey County, Kentucky., Credit: Lisa Gillespie/Side Effects Public Media
Rural America has high rates of chronic disease – the more remote a community, the more heart disease, cancer and diabetes. And there’s a side effe...

  • Added: Jun 05, 2019
  • Length: 03:55