WBFO Health & Wellness Desk

  

For a region to thrive, its people need to be healthy; inadequacies in health and wellness have a range of social and economic consequences that affect many members of our community. Health inequality, cancer clusters, and high rates of heart disease and obesity are all part of the fabric of WNY, as much as the world-class research and treatment providers that are becoming a growing part of the region’s economic power. WBFO is committed to providing listeners with incisive reports on all of these issues that affect their lives.

The Health & Wellness New Desk is funded by BlueCross BlueShield of Western New York.

   

Kyle S. Mackie/WBFO News

September is Hunger Action Month, and one place where it’s increasingly important to fight hunger is on college campuses.


Steven Senne / Associated Press

New York’s ban on flavored electronic cigarettes could soon be extended to menthol e-cigarettes. 

Mike Desmond / WBFO News

Buffalo's Harborcenter is getting a new sponsor. On the doors, walls and every other available space at the downtown hockey rink, a college of osteopathic medicine will now be included on the signs.

U.S. Sens. Chuck Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand on Saturday announced $5.6 million in federal funding for Erie County and $2.75 million for Niagara County under the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Lead-Based Paint Hazard Reduction Program.

Niagara University

Western New York Girls in Sports Day is coming to Niagara County. The first will be held Saturday.

D'Youville College

D'Youville College's plans for a new health hub hit a speed bump Tuesday in front of Buffalo's Common Council over the perennial West Side issue of parking.


Karen DeWitt

New York’s Health Department Public Health Council voted to ban flavored e-cigarettes in the state beginning Oct. 4. They did so over the protests of vape shop owners, who say they are helping people quit smoking tobacco cigarettes and that they will lose their businesses when the ban takes effect.


Karen Dewitt / WBFO Albany Correspondent

The vaping industry is reacting to Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s upcoming ban on flavored e-cigarettes, saying that it is misguided and will force many small-business owners to close their shops and lay off employees. Some are predicting legal action.


File photo / WBFO News

Gov. Andrew Cuomo issued an executive order to direct his health department to ban all flavored electronic cigarettes, in response to a vaping heath emergency that has sickened hundreds and killed six people.


There’s new scrutiny on vaping products of all kinds, as the number of New Yorkers sickened with a disease that is so far related to some black-market marijuana vaping products has now risen to 60. Hundreds of people across the United States have been sickened, and six have died.


Jacquie Prenatt

Buffalo’s Walk to End Alzheimer’s returns this weekend, as thousands are expected to walk around the Outer Harbor in the name of fighting the cognitive disease.

 

Mike Desmond/WBFO

Medaille College kicked off its new sports home in South Buffalo yesterday with wins in both women's and men's soccer. For the first time in 22 years of Medaille athletics the college has an outdoor facility, located at the former site of the Buffalo Color plant.


Mike Desmond/WBFO

Erie County Medical Center held a symbolic topping-off ceremony for its new $58 million trauma and emergency room on Tuesday.


Kyle S. Mackie/WBFO News

An estimated 100 people representing dozens of churches gathered Tuesday at Mt. Olive Baptist Church on Buffalo’s East Side to proclaim their opposition to abortion.


Erie County is not a particularly healthy county, with issues across the board. Those problems can be even worse for certain segments of the community, particularly people of color, and many of them are reluctant to come forward and seek health care.


WBFO file photo

Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the state health department are continuing to urge New Yorkers to refrain from using any vaping products while an investigation continues into the cause of a mysterious vaping-related lung ailment that has now sickened 41 New Yorkers.


File photo / WBFO News

The serious lung disease blamed on vaping and the use of electronic cigarettes has hit Western New York and research scientists are racing to figure out what's going on.


Eileen Koteras Elibol / WNED|WBFO

The annual Artie Awards, which honors the best of Buffalo theater, isn't just an excuse to get dressed up for a fun night on the town. It also serves a greater purpose and this year, that purpose was to raise funds for ECMC's HIV/AIDS and Immunodeficiency Clinic.

Eileen Buckley / WBFO News

It is inspection day for tens of thousands of students. Parents are checking the first use of new school clothes or taking that picture of the first day of school. They also may want to take a look at how their kids are standing with a heavily-laden backpack strapped behind them.

Mike Desmond / WBFO News

Buffalo lawmakers are considering a six-month moratorium on the opening of new vape shops, the stores that sell e-cigarettes and supplies.

Google Maps

Eastern Niagara Hospital is making more cuts to services and employees, as it attempts to close a $10 million deficit.

It was 2012 when University at Buffalo researcher and retired New York State Trooper John Violanti published one of the first studies to test - and find - the connection between stress and suicide in the Buffalo Police Department. His five-year study of 464 BPD officers found a higher percentage of chronic mental and physical health problems than the general population, including a 50% higher rate of suicide. The study is worth revisiting, as two major police departments are grappling with self-inflicted deaths.


Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz said they are no better than a corner drug dealer. He was referring to corporate opioid makers. Poloncarz sees the county's lawsuits against them benefitting from an Oklahoma judge's ruling this week that Johnson & Johnson intentionally played down the risks, oversold the benefits of the drugs and must pay $572 million.

An Erie County judge has, as desired by both the defense attorney and the Erie County District Attorney, shown leniency for a man who admitted earlier this year to filing more than a dozen restaurant health inspections that he never actually conducted.

Brett Dahlberg / WXXI News

Bonnie Smorol had a tough choice. She has two aunts who had cancer that can be caused by a mutation in a certain gene.

Smorol, 60, did not meet the guidelines for genetic screening until the second aunt was diagnosed. Then, she had to decide how much she wanted to know about her own DNA.

“I did choose to be tested,” Smorol said. “I have a daughter with two daughters, so I wanted to see where this was going, and the testing unfortunately came back positive.”

Kyle S. Mackie/WBFO News

A dedication ceremony and blessing was held Tuesday in Cheektowaga for a new training center that seeks to combat high caregiver turnover.

WNY Vision Walk expands into Vision Fest

Aug 20, 2019
Chris Caya WBFO News

An annual fundraiser for the Foundation Fighting Blindness is expanding. Western New York Vision Walk is now known as WNY VisionFest.

U.S. Agriculture Department

Tuesday, Aug. 20 is the first day of scheduled rabies vaccine airdrops at numerous locations in Erie and Niagara Counties. Bait laced with the vaccine will be dropped in areas where wild animals known to carry rabies may be lurking. Erie County is also planning three rabies vaccine clinics next month to protect pets from the fatal virus.

ecmc.edu

Health disparities among African Americans in Erie County is a topic which is gaining steam among local leaders. At the second annual Igniting Hope Conference, held this past weekend, one of the main ideas was on how to get disparate groups, all working towards the same goal of improving the social determinants of health among African Americans, all at the table and working cohesively. To that end, Erie County Medical Center Corporation is providing $372,000 to help create the Buffalo Center for African American Health Equity.

Omar Fetouh, WBFO

The Erie County Health Department confirmed Friday afternoon a case of Hepatitis A has been diagnosed in an individual who handled food at a Buffalo-based pizzeria. The county will offer vaccination clinics early next week for those who consumed any food or drinks from Platinum Pizza between Aug. 8 and Aug. 11.

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