Health

‘A cliff effect’: As federal benefits drop, food insecurity likely to rise again

An enormous influx of federal dollars helped stem the rising tide of hunger during the COVID-19 pandemic, but what happens when those benefits end?


The results are in: Standardized test scores fell during pandemic year

WASHINGTON - Standardized test scores in Arizona fell across the board last school year, as COVID-19 upended learning through the year and led to a sharp drop in the number of students taking the tests, the Arizona Department of Education said.

Clarendon Elementary School photo

How COVID-19 and red tape pushed millions to the brink of homelessness

Across the U.S., as many as 1 in 5 renters have fallen behind on rent during the pandemic. For families who have no financial safety net to fall back on, the economic consequences of the pandemic have pushed them to the precipice of homelessness. The situation is made worse by bureaucracy.


With 253,000 Arizonans behind on rent, court halts eviction moratorium

WASHINGTON - The Supreme Court's decision to overturn a national eviction moratorium late Thursday comes as an estimated one-fifth of U.S. renters are behind on the rent - including 253,000 in Arizona.


Some schools sticking with mask mandates, despite Ducey funding threat

WASHINGTON - Friday was the deadline for schools to drop mask mandates if they wanted to be eligible for a share of millions in COVID-19 state aid, but at least several districts in the state were refusing to comply with Gov. Doug Ducey's demand.


As COVID-19 testing numbers rise, Embry Health hopes to expand services

MESA – COVID-19 testing numbers are increasing as schools reopen and the delta variant spreads. To counter the rise in numbers and reduce wait times, Embry Health is bringing in hundreds of new workers.


Essential but ignored: How day care powered the pandemic workforce

The pandemic exposed how vulnerable and essential child care providers are in America. The median hourly wage is $10.31, and most workers receive no benefits, but they play a crucial role in getting people back to work.


Roll on: New mats provide greater access to LA County beaches

Wheelchair users and other mobility device users now can roll on a synthetic mat at popular California beaches without getting stuck in the sand. It gives them freedom to move closer to the waves.


Child welfare systems face additional challenges during pandemic

Systems meant to deal with abused and neglected children are facing many new challenges in the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, which put many parents out of work and many families on the streets.


Legalization brings legitimacy to needle exchange programs in Arizona

PHOENIX – Arizona’s needle exchange law is set to take effect next month. Exchange programs have been in operation in the state for years, but advocates are looking ahead to how the law will change operations.


Border town ‘fed up’ as ban on nonessential travel extended yet again

WASHINGTON - The federal government's COVID-19 ban on nonessential border crossings was set to expire Saturday, after being in place 17 months, but it has been extended for another month, further crippling local businesses that rely on cross-border customers.


Experts hope FDA’s full Pfizer vaccine OK boosts Arizona vaccinations

WASHINGTON – Health officials expressed hope Monday that the Food and Drug Administration's full approval of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine will boost vaccinations in Arizona, which lags well behind the national average.