Health Health

Health

Rachel Maryam Smith fell in love with the ethereal beauty of giant soap bubbles several years ago and began creating them at sunset events in Santa Cruz, Calif. When enjoying bubbles together, "there is a euphoric point I have observed my participants reach," she says. Carolyn Klein Lagattuta hide caption

toggle caption
Carolyn Klein Lagattuta

The Biden Administration has informed congress that it will formally end the national COVID public health emergency on May 11th. CHRISTOPHE ARCHAMBAULT/AFP via Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption
CHRISTOPHE ARCHAMBAULT/AFP via Getty Images

Hidden Viruses And How To Prevent The Next Pandemic

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/1153947155/1154300953" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Immunity Americans acquired through vaccination or via prior infection with the SARS-CoV-2 virus may account for the lighter than expected COVID surge in the U.S. this winter, researchers say. David Ryder/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption
David Ryder/Getty Images

This winter's U.S. COVID surge is fading fast, likely thanks to a 'wall' of immunity

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/1153970427/1154359667" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

When doctors in Ukraine put out a call for abortion pills, a group of Ukrainian women answer. Oksana Drachkovska for NPR hide caption

toggle caption
Oksana Drachkovska for NPR

Listen.

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/1153779472/1154063864" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

This scanning electron microscope image made available by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows rod-shaped Pseudomonas aeruginosa bacteria. U.S. health officials are advising people to stop using the over-the-counter eye drops, EzriCare Artificial Tears, that have been linked to an outbreak of drug-resistant infections of Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Janice Haney Carr/AP hide caption

toggle caption
Janice Haney Carr/AP

Jupiter's moon Io, seen here in the infrared spectrum, courses with volcanic activity. Scientists are learning how the push and pull of gravity heats up this moon. NASA/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption
NASA/Getty Images

From a green comet to cancer-sniffing ants, we break down the science headlines

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/1153898333/1154004171" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Yeshnee Naidoo prepares a "flow cell" for analysis by one of the center's many genetic sequencing machines. Tommy Trenchard for NPR hide caption

toggle caption
Tommy Trenchard for NPR

Who's most likely to save us from the next pandemic? The answer may surprise you

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/1153625557/1153855614" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

Each year, RSV infections send up to 80,000 kids under 5 to the hospital for emergency treatment. A new antibody treatment could protect the youngest kids — newborns and up infants up to 2 years old. Christoph Soeder/dpa/picture alliance via Getty I hide caption

toggle caption
Christoph Soeder/dpa/picture alliance via Getty I

A sign noting the acceptance of electronic benefit transfer (EBT) cards, which SNAP beneficiaries use to pay for food, is displayed at a grocery store in 2019 in Oakland, Calif. SNAP emergency allotments are ending after this month and have already ended in some parts of the country. Justin Sullivan/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

A researcher releases a bat after taking samples and inserting a microchip into it in Faridpur, Bangladesh. Fatima Tuj Johora for NPR hide caption

toggle caption
Fatima Tuj Johora for NPR

Nipah: Using sticks to find a fatal virus with pandemic potential

The Nipah virus is on the World Health Organization's short list of diseases that have pandemic potential and therefore pose the greatest public health risk. With a fatality rate at about 70%, it is one of the most deadly respiratory diseases health officials have ever seen. But as regular outbreaks began in the early 2000s in Bangladesh, researchers were left scratching their heads. Initially, the cause of the outbreaks was unknown to them. But once they identified the virus, a second, urgent question arose: How was the virus jumping from bats into humans?

Nipah: Using sticks to find a fatal virus with pandemic potential

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/1153377125/1153644292" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript
Olivier Douliery/AFP via Getty Images

A Trump-appointed Texas judge could force a major abortion pill off the market

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/1153593174/1153673998" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

As soda consumption has dropped in the West, companies are making an effort to woo new customers in other places. This Coke bottle ad is in Mozambique. Thomas Trutschel/Photothek via Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption
Thomas Trutschel/Photothek via Getty Images

Sahar Pirzada chose to have an abortion in 2018 when she learned that her fetus had Trisomy 18, a rare genetic condition that almost always ends in miscarriage or stillbirth. Lauren Justice for NPR hide caption

toggle caption
Lauren Justice for NPR

Muslim-American opinions on abortion are complex. What does Islam actually say?

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/1152071397/1152074919" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

A sign calling attention to drug overdoses is posted in a gas station on the White Earth reservation in Ogema, Minn.. A new study shows that early deaths due to addiction and suicide have impacted American Indian and Alaska Native communities far more than white communities. David Goldman/AP hide caption

toggle caption
David Goldman/AP

Native Americans left out of 'deaths of despair' research

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/1152222968/1152632181" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

New York state records show nearly half the state's 600-plus nursing homes hired real estate, management and staffing companies run or controlled by their owners, frequently paying them well above the cost of services. Meanwhile, in the pandemic's height, the federal government was giving the facilities hundreds of millions in fiscal relief. Maskot/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption
Maskot/Getty Images

Humira, the injectable biologic treatment for rheumatoid arthritis, now faces its first competition from one of several copycat "biosimilar" drugs expected to come to market this year. Some patients spend $70,000 a year on Humira. JB Reed/Bloomberg via Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption
JB Reed/Bloomberg via Getty Images
wagnerokasaki/Getty Images

Scant obesity training in medical school leaves docs ill-prepared to help patients

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/1152491692/1152739836" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

A field researcher holds a male bat that was trapped in an overhead net as part of an effort to find out how the animals pass Nipah virus to humans. The animal will be tested for the virus, examined and ultimately released. Fatima Tuj Johora for NPR hide caption

toggle caption
Fatima Tuj Johora for NPR

The Nipah virus has a kill rate of 70%. Bats carry it. But how does it jump to humans?

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/1148681236/1152751704" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

Fifth-graders wearing face masks sit at proper social distancing during a music class at the Milton Elementary School in Rye, N.Y., May 18, 2021. The COVID-19 pandemic that shuttered classrooms set back learning in some U.S. school systems by more than a year, with children in high-poverty areas affected the most, according to data shared with The Associated Press. Mary Altaffer/AP hide caption

toggle caption
Mary Altaffer/AP