cat drinking water
Flickr Photo/Philip Kraaijenbrink (CC BY-ND 2.0)/

Jeannie Yandel speaks with Maia Bellon, director of the Washington State Department of Ecology, about Governor Jay Inslee's proposal for revised water quality standards.

This is a landmark week in West Africa. For the first time since the Ebola outbreak, there were no new cases reported in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone.

There are many unsung heroes who deserve credit for this milestone. One of them is Dr. Boie Jalloh, age 30. Ten days after he showed up for his medical residency at 34th Military Hospital in Freetown, Sierra Leone, he received a letter requesting his presence at the hospital's newly constructed Ebola unit.

There's a lot of worry about nearsightedness in children, with rates soaring in Southeast Asia as populations become more urban and educated. But maybe it also has something to do with how much Mom and Dad make you hit the books.

Firstborn children are 10 percent more likely to be nearsighted than latter-borns, according to a study published Thursday in JAMA Ophthalmology. And they're 20 percent more likely to be severely myopic.

Flickr photo/sea turtle (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

Audio Pending...

Seattle may be one of the country’s most progressive cities, but it falls short on services for elderly LGBTQ people, according to University of Washington researchers.

So they advise creating a new program to train health and human service providers in caring for older adults who are lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender.

Guns line the walls of the firearms reference collection at the Washington Metropolitan Police Department headquarters in Washington, D.C.
AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin

More mental health treatment and gun control won't necessarily prevent mass shootings, but a new California law might help, says a public health researcher.

With his ambulance sirens blaring, Edmund Hassan speeds to a home in South Boston after getting a call that someone there is unconscious. He's deputy superintendent of Boston Emergency Medical Services, and he suspects an opioid overdose. These days, he says, his workers administer Narcan, the drug that reverses that kind of overdose, roughly three times in every eight-hour shift.

Updated at 10:52 a.m.

When it comes to eating well, should we consider the health of both our bodies and the planet?

Flickr Photo/Eierschneider (CC BY 2.0)/

Jeannie Yandel talks to Dr. Stanley Herring, co-director of UW Medicine's Sports Health and Safety Institute, about the safety of high school football players and other teen athletes. Herring is also medical director of Spine, Sports and Orthopedic Health at UW Medicine and a team doctor for the Seattle Seahawks and the Seattle Mariners. 

Herring said he would allow a child to play football, or another sport, only under these terms: The program has well-trained coaches; there is an emergency medical action plan in place; coaches, parents and athletes were educated about the risk of all injuries – not just concussions; and there was a plan for practices and games that limited unnecessary exposure to injury.

Flowers at a memorial for the 2014 Seattle Pacific University shooting.
KUOW Photo/Joshua McNichols

Jeannie Yandel talks with Seattle Pacific University student Chris Howard about his experience dealing with the aftermath of the 2014 shooting at SPU in light of the recent school shooting at Umpqua Community College in  Roseburg, Oregon.

Virginia Mason hospital in Seattle.
Flickr Photo/Rob Ketcherside (CC-BY-NC-ND)

A commonly used medical device that has contributed to a spate of infections nationwide is getting more scrutiny.

The FDA has ordered companies that make duodenoscopes to conduct detailed studies on how the device is used and cleaned. It also instructed the companies to collect culture samples from the scopes to check for contamination.

Updated at 9:15 p.m. ET.

California Gov. Jerry Brown signed landmark legislation Monday, allowing terminally ill patients to obtain lethal medication to end their lives when and where they choose.

In a deeply personal note, Brown said he read opposition materials carefully, but in the end was left to reflect on what he would want in the face of his own death.

The medicines they helped develop are credited with improving the lives of millions. And now three researchers working in the U.S., Japan and China have won the 2015 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine. Among the winners: William C. Campbell of Drew University in Madison, N.J., for his work on the roundworm parasite.

Marie D. de Jesus

Purvi Patel is currently serving 20 years of a 46-year prison sentence at the Indiana Women's Prison in Indianapolis. She's unique among the 600-plus inmates, the first woman to be convicted under Indiana's feticide law for ending her own pregnancy.

This September alone, three high school football players died after injuries sustained on the field. The latest, a 17-year-old quarterback from New Jersey, suffered a ruptured spleen during a game just over a week ago.

In some high schools across the U.S., deaths such as these — and an increased focus on the risk of head injury and concussions — have raised concerns among parents and diminished interest in the sport. At others, like the Maplewood Richmond Heights High School in suburban St. Louis, the football programs have disbanded altogether.

If your company hasn't launched a wellness program, this might be the year.

As benefits enrollment for 2016 approaches, more employers than ever are expected to nudge workers toward plans that screen them for risks, monitor their activity and encourage them to take the right pills, food and exercise.