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Kerry Klein's collaborative reports

Although still unknown outside of the American west, valley fever is a severe fungal infection — and its territory may expand as the climate warms.
In his final 2018-2019 budget former California Gov. Jerry Brown allocated $8 million in state funding toward combating valley fever, split evenly between the University of California system and the new Valley Fever Institute at Kern Medical in Bakersfield. Here’s how that money’s been spent.
Researchers have been trying to understand valley fever for decades, but the playing field remained small until recently.
UCLA's Dr. Manish Butte still remembers the day almost two years ago when he met a young boy who could barely walk or talk and needed a feeding tube to eat. He was suffering from a life-threatening case of valley fever.
Research suggests an alarming link between a common drug used for valley fever and birth defects. The disease also tends to be more severe in pregnant women.
The antifungal drugs used to treat valley fever can cause hair loss. With the number of valley fever cases on the rise, a wig shop in Bakersfield, Calif., is helping women feel better about themselves.
The budget includes $8 million for research and outreach into the disease, caused by inhaling spores that grow in arid soil.
In the city of Lemoore, a community of 25,000 rising out of arid cropland in California’s San Joaquin Valley, almost everyone has a story about valley fever.
Richard Nuwintore's sentence in the California prison system has ended, but the valley fever infection he picked up while doing time is a life sentence. The state is now working to lower the risk for inmates.
A new skin test called Spherusol can detect whether a person has developed immunity to valley fever. But despite its promise, the test still isn’t in wide use.

Kerry Klein's Blog

The Central Valley's Kern County reported a 30 percent rise in overdose deaths from 2016 to 2017,... more »
posted 10/17/18
The shortage of doctors in California’s San Joaquin Valley has long impacted Central Californians... more »
posted 03/03/17

Kerry Klein's Work

A reporter shares a handful of investigative reporting techniques that proved essential in overcoming blind spots among local health experts who were largely unaware of opioids' toll in their communities.
This story was produced as part of a larger project led by Kerry Klein, a participant in the USC Center for Health Journalism's 2018 Data Fellowship....
Despite the chokehold heroin and pain pills have had on public health for years, Bakersfield cops are dealing with far more than opioids.

Collaborative Reporting

Although still unknown outside of the American west, valley fever is a severe fungal infection —... more »
In his final 2018-2019 budget former California Gov. Jerry Brown allocated $8 million in state... more »