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Cancer in a Forgotten Corner of California

Imperial County is a rural farming community tucked into the southeast corner of the state along the border with Mexico. According to the 2008 Imperial County Health Status report, the incidence rate of cancer in there has been consistently lower than state-wide rates.

A Presidents’ Day tribute to the man who urged the nation to stop smoking

John F. Kennedy made one of the most lasting contributions to public health by appointing Luther Terry as U.S. Surgeon General, because Terry turned the world’s attention to the dangers of tobacco smoking.

Hiring a cancer survivor

The most recent employment report from the U.S. Labor Department showed the job market remained tough in January. If it’s difficult for healthy individuals to get a job, what is it like for cancer survivors?

Too Few Realize Obesity Can Cause Cancer

Everybody knows that smoking causes cancer, and that obesity causes heart disease, but even most doctors and scientists I speak to have no idea about the very large effect obesity has on cancer.

Unnecessary palpitations over palliative care

In my last blog post, I wrote about pain and addiction, and quoted my palliative care doctor. Some readers took that to mean that I am at the end of the road, so to speak, since I am calling for palliative care. No, I’m not! (At least I hope I’m not.)

Q&A with Liz Szabo Part 2: Seeing the humanity in the harshest of critics

USA Today's Liz Szabo knows that criticism comes with the territory, but she doesn't respond to name-calling. She will engage in constructive and civil conversation with readers who are genuinely concerned.

Controlling pain and guarding against addiction

I was a bit surprised by how readily this new physician I visited agreed to prescribe more pain medication for me. My previous experience before I was a cancer patient was that doctors were unwilling to prescribe highly addictive drugs — but they weren’t palliative care doctors, like him.

Q&A with Liz Szabo: Braving legal threats to investigate a medical folk hero

USA Today reporter Liz Szabo breaks news for a living. So she had to squeeze her investigation of Dr. Stanley Burzynski and the patients who died under his care into the few hours or minutes between breaking daily news.

Pumping Iron During Chemo

Exercise is good for cancer patients, doctors these days say. That’s an about-face from just a decade ago when they urged patients to conserve their flagging energy. 

Researching the obvious: It stinks to have cancer

At a time when there are so many vital questions to ask, and research budgets everywhere are under attack, I wonder why well-meaning researchers pick obvious questions to ask. Is it easier to get funding? Are they cheaper to execute? Is the bar lower?

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Reporting on Underserved Communities

How can journalists and foundations collaborate to deepen and improve reporting on underserved communities? Our USC Annenberg School of Journalism program in collaboration with The California Endowment, the Wyncote Foundation and Media Impact Funders, convened 75 leaders from both fields.

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