Health Care

Medical Marijuana Still Smoldering in Utah

Mar 11, 2016
Image Medscape.com

The legislative session ended with no action on medical marijuana, but lawmakers and advocates are already strategizing for their next moves.

Andrea Smardon / KUER

One of the most hotly contested issues in the legislature this year was medical marijuana, but lawmakers ran out of time before they could pass any legislation.

Andrea Smardon / KUER

After several years of debate, the Utah legislature has approved a partial Medicaid expansion, but Democratic lawmakers say they’re not done with this issue yet.

Brian Grimmett/KUER

The Utah Senate voted Tuesday to expand the state’s Medicaid program, but only to cover a small population living in extreme poverty. 

Andrea Smardon / KUER

One medical marijuana bill appears to be dead in the Utah legislature, while another advances to the House floor.

Utah House Passes a Limited Medicaid Expansion Bill

Mar 4, 2016
Andrea Smardon / KUER

The state House of Representatives has approved a bill that would provide Medicaid benefits to a limited number of Utahns in poverty. Most House Republicans supported the measure, but Democrats were conflicted.

Democrats Call GOP Medicaid Plan a “Cop Out”

Mar 3, 2016
Andrea Smardon / KUER

Democrats are opposing a bill that would extend Medicaid benefits to a limited number of Utahns in poverty. They say it doesn’t go far enough, but the Republican plan doesn’t need support from the minority party to pass.

Andrea Smardon / KUER

Local leaders gathered at the Utah Capitol Tuesday to throw their support behind legislation that would provide health coverage to those in extreme poverty.

Brian Grimmett / KUER

A House committee approved a limited Medicaid expansion bill Monday afternoon, but health care advocates around the state are not all unified in support.

Andrea Smardon / KUER

Vice President Joe Biden visited the Huntsman Cancer Institute Friday to talk about Utah’s role in the national “moonshot” initiative to eliminate cancer as we know it.

Medical Marijuana Passes Utah Senate, Goes to House

Feb 25, 2016
Andrea Smardon / KUER

The Utah House of Representatives will get a chance to debate medical marijuana. The Senate voted 17 to 12 to pass a broad measure that would allow Utah patients to use cannabis extracts when recommended by a doctor.

Andrea Smardon / KUER

With just about two weeks left in the legislative session, it’s not clear if anything will get done on expanding Medicaid this year.

Andrea Smardon / KUER

Utah Senators were expected to take a vote on medical marijuana legislation Tuesday, but the bill’s sponsor Mark Madsen asked for more time to talk with his colleagues. Meanwhile, there’s an amendment in the works to address the risk of children overdosing.

Andrea Smardon / KUER

Utah got one step closer to legalized medical marijuana Monday. In a close vote, the Utah Senate gave preliminary approval to a broad cannabis bill, but advocates are not optimistic the bill will make it past the next vote.

Brian Grimmett / KUER

Medical marijuana is not dead yet. Senators have delayed a vote on a broad plan, and they say it may be too close to call at this point.

University of Utah School of Medicine Division of Epilepsy

While debate rages at the Utah Capitol over two competing medical marijuana bills, one lawmaker has come up with a resolution to encourage more research that all sides seem to agree on.

Andrea Smardon / KUER

Medical marijuana advocates are regrouping after LDS Church authorities announced their opposition to a bill that would make whole-plant access legal in Utah. Proponents convened at the Capitol Tuesday to talk about an effort to let the voters decide.

Andrea Smardon / KUER

Medicaid expansion is under consideration again at the Utah legislature. Advocates and members of the public showed up in force Thursday morning for a committee meeting on the issue.

Lawmaker Wants to Put Medicaid Expansion on the Ballot

Feb 8, 2016

A Democratic lawmaker is working on legislation that would allow Utah voters to weigh in on expanding Medicaid in the state.

Medical Marijuana Proposals Advance to Utah Senate

Feb 5, 2016
Andrea Smardon / KUER

Two competing medical marijuana bills were approved by legislative panels Thursday after some emotional testimony.

Brian Grimmett / KUER file photo

Two medical marijuana proposals will be vetted by separate Utah legislative committees Thursday.

Muhammad Mahdi Karim, Wikimedia Commons

The World Health Organization has declared an international emergency over the explosive spread of the mosquito-borne Zika virus. Health officials are most concerned about possible birth defects when a pregnant woman is bitten by a mosquito carrying the Zika virus.

Brian Grimmett / KUER

As another Utah legislative session gets underway, the question remains whether lawmakers will expand Medicaid.

Courtesy photo

Democrats in the Utah House of Representatives are calling on Governor Gary Herbert to reverse his decision to defund Planned Parenthood in the state, but the governor is not standing down.

KUER File, Bob Nelson

Influenza has claimed its first Utah victim of this year’s flu season. Salt Lake County Health Department officials announced the confirmed case Monday; a 65 year-old resident who had not received the seasonal flu vaccine.

Whittney Evans

Low-income and homeless patients at Volunteers of America’s Cornerstone Counseling Center can now access primary care in the same facility they go to get help for substance abuse and mental health disorders.

Utah Department of Health, Utah Cancer Control Program

Utah’s rate of vaccination for HPV, or Human papillomavirus, is well below the national average.  The Utah Department of Health is launching a new media campaign aimed at increasing the rate of HPV vaccinations among 11-12 year old Utahns.

Healthcare Depot Opens Up Shop at Valley Fair Mall

Jan 1, 2016
Andrea Smardon / KUER

There’s a new storefront at Valley Fair Mall in West Valley City, but they’re not selling shoes or clothes. They’re in the business of healthcare.

U Researchers Buoyed by Health Funding Boost

Dec 21, 2015
Bob Nelson

On Friday, President Obama signed into law a bill that would increase the budget for the National Institutes of Health (NIH) by two billion dollars. For health scientists at the University of Utah, the outlook for 2016 just got brighter.

Feds Want More Utahns to Sign up for Health Insurance

Dec 15, 2015
Official photo

US Secretary of Health and Human Services Sylvia Burwell wants Utahns to sign up for health insurance if they haven’t done so yet. On average, insurance companies in Utah are raising premium rates 10 to 20 percent in the coming year, and three insurers have dropped out of the marketplace entirely, but Burwell insists Utahns should be able to find affordable coverage.

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