Science and Technology

'Cocaine? No thanks!'

May 23, 2012
Boone County Courthouse
Jacob Fenston / KBIA

Back in the late 1980s, while the nation was in the grips of the war on drugs, some courts started experimenting with alternative sentencing programs they hoped would be cheaper and more effective than incarceration.  This week, the most recent batch of offenders graduated from the Boone County drug court, which is seen as a national role-model.

Missouri River placed on endangered list

May 23, 2012
Missouri Department of Tourism / flickr

The nation’s longest river has found its way onto America’s Most Endangered Rivers list.

Wikipedia

A Columbia hospital says it will close its adult intensive care unit next month because it is not being used enough.

Laura Kebede / Project 573

One in five Americans has some sort of disability according to a study done in 2008 by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. This could include disabilities having to do with hearing, sight, mobility, learning, development or mental health. But not all disabilities are perceived the same way. Drew Graham has a unique perspective on this. He has both a physical and mental disability and has determined over the years that the stigma associated with mental disability carries more weight.

Angela Case / Project 573

The mental health care system is faced with diminishing resources, making it harder for people with psychiatric illnesses to find help. From police officers to school counselors, people outside of the system are working to fill the gaps. Project 573’s Angela Case explains how community hospitals are dealing with the problem, and takes you inside two units that provide this much-needed care.

A new report from the Rocky Mountain Climate Organization and the Natural Resources Defense Council shows that the frequency of severe storms across the Midwest has doubled over the past 50 years.

The report analyzed precipitation data from more than 200 weather stations in eight Midwestern states.

7000 miles bicycling and banjo-ing against war

May 16, 2012
Jacob Fenston / KBIA

Afghan war veteran Jacob George is a self-proclaimed hillbilly farmer from the Ouachita Mountains in Arkansas. After three tours as a combat engineer, he now spends his days bicycling around the country protesting U.S. military involvement in Afghanistan. He recently passed through Missouri on his way to protest the NATO summit taking place in Chicago next week.

j.stephenconn / flickr

The Missouri House has passed legislation that would bar local governments from interfering with the day-to-day operations of alternatives to abortion agencies.

Stories from prison: roar!

May 15, 2012
Jacob Fenston / KBIA

In Missouri state prisons, about 60 percent of inmates have kids. That's 18,000 moms and dads behind bars – and tens of thousands of kids on the other side. To help those parents and kids connect, volunteers make their way through the metal detectors at Missouri state prisons with big tubs of blank tapes and CDs, stamped envelopes, and lots of children's books. 

A new report by the advocacy group American Rivers says when it comes to managing flooding along the Missouri River, the US Army Corps of Engineers should rely on floodplains and wetlands, not levees and dams. But the Corps doesn't see flood management as an "either/or" proposition.

How to be happy

May 10, 2012
Scott Pham / KBIA

On today’s show, we’ll hear about an unlikely place to get small electronics repaired, and learn more about the key to being happy.

A jeweler with cutting edge technology

May 10, 2012
Scott Pham / KBIA

Personal technology is getting cheaper, better, smaller.  But have you ever tried to get fixed a broken cell phone or mp3 player?  When I broke my portable USB flash drive, I brought it to a computer repair technician, unsure if he’d simply turn me away or not.  Those little “thumb” drives are just so small.  No moving parts really, they’re all circuitry.  Turns out that getting it fixed wasn’t an impossibility.  I just had to go to some unusual places.

Matt Veto / KBIA

An MU psychology professor has put a tactical spin on happiness. 

Long distance running, one state at a time

May 9, 2012
Jacob Fenston / KBIA

Planning a road-trip this summer? In this week's Health & Wealth update, the best way to see the country might be to run across it.

File / KBIA

Columbia area residents and officials have started developing recommendations for cleaning up a local waterway.

hospital interior
fotos GOVBA / flickr

Many Missouri hospitals are reporting shortages of necessary pharmaceutical drugs. The Missouri Hospital Association says such shortages are keeping hospitals from effectively delivering care in a safe and timely way to its patients.

Warming temperatures may have you wanting to spend more time outdoors. But warm weather can mean more unhealthy air.

Véronique LaCapra / St. Louis Public Radio

Biologist Edward O. Wilson is an emeritus University Research Professor at Harvard. Through his life-long research on the behavior of ants, he has transformed the disciplines of ecology and evolution, developing new theories and pioneering the field of sociobiology.

MoDOT to crack down on youth impaired driving

May 3, 2012

The Missouri Department of Transportation is cracking down on youth impaired driving.

acephotos1 / dreamstime

A Missouri senator who is a family physician says he'll try to block legislation authorizing a government database to track drug prescriptions unless it is put to a statewide vote.

Republican Sen. Rob Schaaf, of St. Joseph, Mo., began Thursday's debate on the prescription monitoring legislation by vowing to filibuster until he gets his way about a referendum.

If you tax them, they will quit

May 2, 2012
tobaccofreekids.org

You have probably heard the statistic: Missouri has the lowest cigarette tax in the nation – just 17 cents a pack, compared to the national average of $1.46. In this week's Health & Wealth update, public health advocates want to raise Missouri's tobacco tax to deter people from smoking, and to help offset the costs that tobacco incurs.

Missouri health centers receive funding boost

May 1, 2012

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services granted over 10 million dollars to Missouri health centers Tuesday. As part of the Affordable Care Act, the nation’s new health care law, the funds are going to five community health centers across the state. Martin Kramer is a spokesperson for the U.S. Health, Resources and Services Administration. He says the funds will allow the centers to expand their services to more people in need.

Three interviews on health disparities

Apr 30, 2012
Jacob Fenston / KBIA

At the health equity conference in Columbia last week, between the steady stream of PowerPoints and pie charts, I had the chance to talk with some smart folks who spend their time thinking about health disparities and how to end them:

Columbia aims to bring natural gas to residents

Apr 30, 2012

Columbia could be the next city in Missouri to bring natural gas fuel to residents.  The city is also considering purchasing new natural-gas-powered garbage trucks.

Health equity: zip code, not genetic code

Apr 27, 2012
Jacob Fenston / KBIA

Health experts gathered in Columbia today to discuss ways to address disparities in health and access to health care.

Debate continues over Westwood Avenue trees

Apr 27, 2012
Chad Herwald / City of Columbia

A dispute about the removal of several old trees from a “leafy” Southwest Columbia neighborhood may be a step closer to a resolution.

Marie French / KBIA

On this week's show, we’ll debunk some myths about forensic science and learn how a rural doctor shortage affects some patients.

Women in rural Missouri face obstacles to prenatal care

Apr 26, 2012
Charles Minshew / KBIA

There is a shortage of primary care physicians in rural areas and more than half of Missouri counties have no OB-GYN specialists, according to the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services. KBIA’s Marie French takes us to Macon, where many pregnant women often drive 30 minutes or more to get care. 

Contraception debate moves to the Missouri House

Apr 25, 2012
Jacob Fenston / KBIA

Debate continues in the Missouri legislature over the Obama administration's "contraception mandate," which will require health insurance to include coverage for birth control. In this week's Health & Wealth update, a House committee hears testimony on a largely symbolic bill, opposing the mandate.

ameren logo
forwardstl / flickr

Ameren shareholders have voted against three proposals that sought to push the company to do more to address environmental risks from its coal-fired power plants.

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