Health Care | KUER 90.1

Health Care

Erik Neumann

This week advocates for the Utah Medical Cannabis Act held public meetings around the state for input about a medical marijuana law in Utah. They hope to gather enough signatures to put an initiative on the ballot in November.

West Nile Virus Season Begins In Utah

Jul 25, 2017

It’s the beginning of West Nile Virus season in Utah. So far officials at the Utah Department of Health have not discovered anyone who has contracted the disease. But state officials have identified eight pools of water around the state that have tested positive for West Nile. 

Erik Neumann

A psychologist at University of Utah is examining whether growing up in stressful environments could be positive for kids.


Utah Senator Mike Lee was one of two Republican defectors to sink a GOP plan to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act. Today other Republican senators signaled they would not support a different effort to simply repeal the law.  

Utah Sen. Lee Talks Healthcare In Tele-town hall

Jul 12, 2017

On Wednesday night Utah Senator Mike Lee answered questions about healthcare by video from Washington D.C.

Erik Neumann

One of Salt Lake Valley’s Community Health Centers is losing its building this year. Staff say it’s because of increasing gentrification and real-estate pressures in Salt Lake City.


On Monday members of the public criticized parts of the Utah Department of Health’s plan to narrowly expand Medicaid in the state. 

Erik Neumann

On Thursday Utah Senator Orrin Hatch toured the Utah Crime Lab to advocate for new forensic research tools that quickly process DNA evidence.

designer491 via iStock

Utahns who are concerned about the U.S. Senate Republican health bill gathered at Senator Mike Lee's office in Salt Lake City Wednesday. They were hoping to meet with him in person as Congress takes a Fourth of July break.

Brian Grimmett

Until recently, Utah Senator Mike Lee didn’t support the Republican Senate bill written to replace Obamacare. But this week he announced a new change that could sway his vote.

Working with Republican Senator Ted Cruz of Texas, Lee is adding language called the “Consumer Choice” proposal.  

Conn Carroll, Lee’s Communications Director, says the language is meant to reduce the number of regulations that insurance companies have to include in their plans.

Health And Safety Tips For The Fourth Of July

Jun 30, 2017
kooshevoy via iStock

With the Brian Head fire burning in Southwest Utah, authorities are concerned about the dangers fireworks could pose over the Fourth of July. But fire safety isn’t the only concern to keep in mind.

Erik Neumann / KUER

As Republicans in Congress craft legislation that could replace the Affordable Care Act, Medicaid is a program many lawmakers are eager to shrink.  But low-income Utah families depend on the Medicaid program as a safety net for their kids. 

Erik Neumann / KUER

U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price visited Sandy today to listen to Utahns reactions to the current state of healthcare.

Utah Senators Split On Republican Health Bill

Jun 22, 2017
Vekeo screenshot and Brian Grimmett

On Thursday the U.S. Senate released its replacement bill for Obamacare. It was met with mixed responses, including from Utah’s Senators who helped write it.

Erik Neumann

On Wednesday a Utah State Representative announced his plans for a bill to increase access to birth control methods for low-income Utahns.

jorba /


It’s the big theme in this week’s weather forecast, as temperatures soar 10 to 15 degrees higher than normal. The National Weather Service has teamed up with local agencies to prepare the public with a new “heat risk” warning program.

BrianAJackson via iStock

Insurance companies are concerned congress may not fund an important federal subsidy approved under Obamacare for the coming year. That could mean higher healthcare costs for Utahns. 

sakhorn38 via iStock

On Monday attorneys announced a settlement in a class action lawsuit between the Disability Law Center and the Utah Department of Human Services. The plaintiffs wanted to decrease the number of mentally ill people who are stuck in jail awaiting trial.

Two New Reports Rank Well-Being Of Utah Kids

Jun 13, 2017
Erik Neumann

Two new reports out yesterday show that Utah ranks seventh in the nation for child well-being. But that number alone doesn’t tell the full story. 

NikiLitov /

For women who have had breast cancer, a common fear is whether getting pregnant could cause their cancer to come back. A new study out this week offers hopeful news about breast cancer and pregnancy.

Erik Neumann

Representatives from the University of Utah announced a new research center this week. It will focus on the academic study of mindfulness as a way to deal with a number of health issues including pain management. 

This week the Congressional Budget Office released its analysis of the Republican health care bill known as American Health Care Act. KUER looked into what the CBO score could mean for Utahns.

In New Film, A Utah Portrait Of Heroin Abuse

May 16, 2017
Erik Neumann

A Utah filmmaker has a new documentary called Dying in Vein. It looks at the state’s high rates of opiate and heroin addiction through the experiences of drug users and their family members here in Utah.

Erik Neumann

On Friday, Jon Huntsman Sr. published a two-page ad in Salt Lake City’s biggest newspapers highlighting achievements of the Huntsman Cancer Institute and distancing it from the University of Utah.

Courtesy of Eric Temple

On Thursday, House Republicans voted to repeal the Affordable Care Act and replace it with the American Health Care Act. One of the most controversial parts of that replacement is bringing back high-risk pools. Those lump together people with expensive pre-existing conditions into a smaller, subsidized group. The idea is that brings down insurance prices for healthier people. Ogden residents Eric Temple and his wife both have pre-existing conditions.

Drug Task Force Created To Address Opioids In Utah

May 5, 2017
Erik Neumann

On Friday the Utah Attorney General’s office and Drug Enforcement Administration announced a new task force to create a more holistic approach to dealing with opioid abuse in Utah.


On Thursday afternoon all four House members of Utah’s Congressional delegation voted to repeal the Affordable Care Act and replace it with the American Health Care Act.

Courtesy of University of Utah

After a turbulent two weeks at the University of Utah, on Monday Dr. Lorris Betz took over for Dr. Vivian Lee as interim senior vice president for health sciences. 

Courtesy of the University of Utah

Late Friday evening, University of Utah President David Pershing announced that he had accepted Dr. Vivian Lee’s resignation. She steps down from her posts as CEO of University Health Care, Senior Vice President of Health Sciences and Dean of the School of Medicine. On Saturday, University President David Pershing named Dr. A. Lorris Betz as interim CEO.

DEA Holds Prescription Drug Take Back Day

Apr 28, 2017
Erik Neumann

This Saturday is Drug Enforcement Administration's "National Prescription Drug Take Back Day." Here in Utah, the DEA is adding collection boxes to dispose of drugs that contribute to the state’s opioid problem.