Americans cross the US-Mexico border for more affordable IVF treatment

YUMA – Cristina Yanez and her husband, Alex, spent eight years trying to conceive a child, but they were always met with disappointment. That’s when the Yuma couple turned to IVF options in Mexico. Now, they’re parents of three boys.

A Dr. Cigüeña staff member prepares Cristina Yanez for the transfer of embryos on Aug. 27, 2019. (Photo courtesy of Cristina Yanez)

Nevada summit discusses problem of – and solutions to – youth homelessness

LAS VEGAS – A summit to address youth homelessness in Nevada brought organizations together to explore solutions to end youth homelessness.

The seventh annual Nevada Youth Homelessness Summit takes place at the Smith Center for Performing Arts in Las Vegas on Nov. 8. (Photo by Oakley Seiter/Cronkite News)

Being ‘my own role model’: Normalizing mental health care in the AANHPI community

PHOENIX – People in the Asian American, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander communities face various barriers to accessing mental health care, including cultural stigmas and limited cultural competency from providers. Despite barriers, people within these communities are working to normalize conversations around mental health.

Shela Yu, a Phoenix-based artist, in her studio space on Nov. 30. Yu was raised in Mesa. (Photo by John Leos/Cronkite News)

Maricopa County uses portion of national opioid settlement for group that helps recovering women

PHOENIX – Maricopa County got $2 million in national opioid settlement funds and gave $60,000 to Live and Learn AZ, a local organization that supported April Hernandez so she could overcome a crystal meth addiction and get back on her feet.

Live & Learn AZ, a nonprofit organization founded in 2012, aims to empower women in the Phoenix metro area and break generational poverty. (Photo By Hunter Fore/Cronkite News)

New Mexico confronts 48% spike in homelessness with housing programs and rental assistance

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – Homelessness in New Mexico increased 48% this year due to housing shortages and rent increases. Government agencies and nonprofit organizations are responding with housing programs and rental assistance to promote stable, more permanent housing.

Pastor Joanne Landry shows the shower facility outside the Compassion Services Center in southeast Albuquerque, Oct. 30. (Photo by Caleb Scott/Cronkite News)

Despite outreach efforts, some unhoused people prefer to stay that way

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – Rabbit, 50, said he has been on the streets for 26 years. He fights to survive every day, frequently going out dumpster diving to find wood for a barrel fire. The homeless community gathers at the Compassion Services Center daily during the winter and help each other stay warm.

A homeless individual who calls himself Rabbit, currently residing near the Compassion Services Center in southeast Albuquerque, on Oct. 30. (Photo by Caleb Scott/Cronkite News)

A Flagstaff nonprofit helps its Indigenous community combat high rates of diabetes using holistic approaches

FLAGSTAFF – Native Americans for Community Action (NACA) combats diabetes within Flagstaff's Indigenous community using a holistic approach. It focuses on reconnecting with traditional cultural practices to manage and prevent diabetes.

Morgan Farley, a Navajo diabetes health coach at NACA, outside NACA’s wellness center, where community members get diabetes management and prevention services. Many studies show that obesity puts people at a higher risk for having diabetes. The NACA program focuses on increasing patients’ physical activity and encouraging healthy eating habits, while also emphasizing the importance of traditional and cultural wellness practices. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 89.8% of adults aged 18 and older diagnosed with diabetes between 2017 and 2020 were classified as overweight or obese. (Photo by Oakley Seiter/Cronkite News)

Infant mortality in Arizona rose 11% in 2022, again topped national rate

PHOENIX – Infant mortality rate has increased across Arizona by 11% due to low birth weight and poverty risk factors. March of Dimes advocates for better protections for mothers and newborns.

In this file photo, Katrina Huynh paces while experiencing labor contractions outside the Midwives Rising birthing center in Phoenix. Maternal health advocates in Arizona are working to bring more attention to a leading cause of pregnancy-related deaths: conditions related to mental health. (File photo by Nicole Neri/Cronkite News)

COVID-19 cases down from pandemic; so are vaccinations, worrying experts

WASHINGTON - The U.S. has entered a "new normal" for COVID-19, with lower but consistent levels of infection. But experts fear that the new normal may include people skipping vaccines that are still needed for protection.

Medical program additions at ASU, UA and NAU aim to curb Arizona’s health care worker shortage

PHOENIX – All three Arizona public universities are implementing big changes to their medical training programs as part of an Arizona Board of Regents initiative, with new medical schools at ASU and NAU to come.

The Arizona State University Edson College of Nursing and Health Innovation is located on Fillmore and Third streets. ASU is planning to build a new medical school in downtown Phoenix. (Photo by Hunter Fore/Cronkite News)

‘Fight before the fight’: MMA warriors battle to beat the scale in grueling process of cutting weight

TEMPE – Mixed martial artists employ unique and healthy strategies to shed pounds, maintain peak performance and conquer the mental and physical challenges before stepping into the octagon.

Carbohydrates and salt are avoided by fighters for the best weight-cutting results during training. On average, fighters typically cut 15-20 pounds ahead of a weigh-in. (Photo by Reece Andrews/Cronkite News)

Phoenix successfully clears its largest homeless encampment by deadline, shifts focus to long-term solutions

PHOENIX – Phoenix cleared its largest homeless encampment, The Zone, by Nov. 4, addressing the urgent need to relocate nearly 1,000 unhoused individuals. Now, the city focuses on implementing lasting solutions for its homeless population.

Officials from the city of Phoenix block off 12th Avenue between Jefferson and Madison streets on the morning of Oct. 20 to facilitate the clearing of a homeless encampment under a court order issued earlier this year. (Photo by John Leos/Cronkite News)