Christine Herman
Christine Herman
Reporter @willpublicmedia @sideeffectsnews • Contributor @NPR @KHNews • '18 @CarterFellows • former @21stShow • PhD chemist • @AHCJ @AAJA • #AIRNewVoices alumSource
Urbana, IL
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To Get Mental Health Help For A Child, Desperate Parents Relinquish Custody

To Get Mental Health Help For A Child, Desperate Parents Relinquish Custody

When Toni and Jim Hoy adopted their son Daniel through the foster care system, he was an affectionate toddler. They did not plan to give him back to the state of Illinois, ever. "Danny was this cute, lovable little blond-haired, blue-eyed baby," Jim says. Toni recalls times Daniel would reach over, put his hands on her face and squish her cheeks. "And he would go, 'You pretty, Mom,' " Toni says. "Oh my gosh, he just melted my heart when he would say these very loving, endearing things to me." But as Daniel grew older, he changed. He began to show signs of serious mental illness that...

January 2, 2019
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To Help Farmworkers Get Covid Tests and Vaccine, Build Trust and a Safety Net

To Help Farmworkers Get Covid Tests and Vaccine, Build Trust and a Safety Net

This story is part of a reporting partnership that includes ,  and KHN. It can beWith more than of corn and soybeans, Illinois is among the top U.S. producers of those crops. To make it all happen, the state relies on thousands of farmworkers — some of whom travel to the state for seasonal work and others, like 35-year-old Saraí, who call Illinois home.Being an agricultural worker “is the most beautiful thing,” Saraí said in an interview in Spanish.She moved to the U.S. from Mexico to find work that would allow her to better support her family. KHN agreed to identify Saraí by only her first...

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Mar 4
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To Help Farmworkers Get COVID-19 Tests And Vaccine, Build Trust And A Safety Net

To Help Farmworkers Get COVID-19 Tests And Vaccine, Build Trust And A Safety Net

To Help Farmworkers Get COVID-19 Tests And Vaccine, Build Trust And A Safety Net : Shots - Health News Getting COVID-19 tests and vaccine to essential workers on commercial farms and in meatpacking plants requires more than a pop-up clinic miles away. A positive test can be financially devastating.Toggle more optionsDana CroninFromToggle more optionsWith more than of corn and soybeans, Illinois is among the top U.S. producers of both those crops. To make it all happen, the state relies on thousands of farmworkers — some who travel to the state for seasonal work and others, like 35-year-old...

Mar 1
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Coronavirus Testing Remains A Problem For Farmworkers, Meatpackers

Coronavirus Testing Remains A Problem For Farmworkers, Meatpackers

Coronavirus Testing Remains A Problem For Farmworkers, Meatpackers Despite being at-risk, essential workers, many who work in farming or meatpacking still lack access to coronavirus testing. Farmworker advocates say that doesn't bode well for vaccination outreach.Toggle more optionsHeard onDana CroninFromToggle more optionsDespite being at-risk, essential workers, many who work in farming or meatpacking still lack access to coronavirus testing. Farmworker advocates say that doesn't bode well for vaccination outreach.SACHA PFEIFFER, HOST:The rollout of coronavirus vaccines offers a light at...

Feb 10
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Kids Already Coping With Mental Disorders Spiral as Pandemic Topples Vital Support Systems

Kids Already Coping With Mental Disorders Spiral as Pandemic Topples Vital Support Systems

This story is part of a reporting partnership that includes , and KHN. It can beA bag of Doritos, that’s all Princess wanted.Her mom calls her Princess, but her real name is Lindsey. She’s 17 and lives with her mom, Sandra, a nurse, outside Atlanta. On May 17, 2020, a Sunday, Lindsey decided she didn’t want breakfast; she wanted Doritos. So she left home and walked to Family Dollar, taking her pants off on the way, while her mom followed on foot, talking to the police on her phone as they went.Lindsey has autism. It can be hard for her to communicate and navigate social situations. She...

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Jan 29
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'I've Tried Everything': Pandemic Has Cut Options For Kids With Mental Illness

'I've Tried Everything': Pandemic Has Cut Options For Kids With Mental Illness

Pandemic Has Worsened U.S. Child Mental Health Crisis : Shots - Health News When schools closed last spring, children with severe mental illnesses were cut off from the services they'd come to rely on. Many have since spiraled into emergency rooms and even police custody.A bag of Doritos, that's all Princess wanted. Her mom calls her Princess, but her real name is Lindsey. She's 17 and lives with her mom, Sandra, a nurse, outside of Atlanta. On May 17, 2020, a Sunday, Lindsey decided she didn't want breakfast; she wanted Doritos. So she left home and walked to Family Dollar, taking her...

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Jan 18
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Back to Life: COVID Lung Transplant Survivor Tells Her Story

Back to Life: COVID Lung Transplant Survivor Tells Her Story

This story is part of a partnership that includes ,  and Kaiser Health News.Mayra Ramirez remembers the nightmares.During six weeks on life support at Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago, Ramirez said, she had terrifying nightmares that she couldn’t distinguish from reality.“Most of them involve me drowning,” she said. “I attribute that to me not being able to breathe, and struggling to breathe.”On June 5, Ramirez, 28, became the to undergo a double lung transplant. She is strong enough now to begin sharing the story of her ordeal.Mysterious ExposureWhen the COVID-19 pandemic hit,...

August 14, 2020
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A Switch To Medicaid Managed Care Worries Some Illinois Foster Families

A Switch To Medicaid Managed Care Worries Some Illinois Foster Families

This story is part of a partnership that includes , and Kaiser Health News.Rebecca and Bruce Austin in central Illinois have six kids — ranging in age from 4 to 22.Five kids still live at home, and all of them came to the Austins through the foster care system. All told, they see 14 doctors.Many states promise to provide health care to help foster and adoptive families keep kids healthy, but recently in Illinois, thousands of children temporarily lost coverage when the state switched their health plans. Some of Rebecca and Bruce’s children got caught in the coverage gap, which has the...

April 21, 2020
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