Reporting Texas
News and features from UT-Austin's School of Journalism

Health

From Pulpit to Pandemic: How Historically Black Texas Churches Spread the Word on Vaccinations

Black churches in Texas have been at the forefront of encouraging their congregations to get vaccinated and change the narrative for Black health.

‘It’s a Free for All’: Kratom Is Legal in Texas But Should it Be?

Supporters tout kratom as a safer alternative to opiates such as heroin and fentanyl, but medical professionals in Texas describe it as being addictive and dangerous and call for it to be categorized as a scheduled substance.

Insulin Price Caps in Texas Provide Relief While Raising Questions About Costs

Dawn White, a nurse from Lumberton, Texas, told lawmakers this past summer she paid $500 for a one-month supply of insulin to treat her son’s type 1 diabetes. That was with insurance. If she lacked insurance, the cost would have been more than $1,000. “Texans are dying because they cannot afford their insulin,” White said. […]

Texas Veterans Desperate for Treatment Find Viable Alternative in Psychedelics

Combat veterans around the nation and in Texas are turning to psychedelic drugs such as ibogaine, psilocybin, DMT and ketamine to combat PTSD, depression and anxiety. Meanwhile, Texas lawmakers are attempting to legitimize the therapies by facilitating clinical research into the drug’s effectiveness.

Dec 07, 2021

UT Study Hopes to Curb LGBTQ Suicide Rates

In April 2021, Lilith, a University of Texas student, attempted taking her own life rather than starting her first year of college. “Most people have idealized versions of themselves, someone they’re going to become one day,” Lilith said. “I never saw this person at the end of the road so I started to think to […]

Oct 15, 2021

COVID-19 Infections in Pregnancy Rise as Vaccination Rate Stays Low

Pregnant people are at increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19. In recent months, health officials have been raising alarms that the group needs to urgently get vaccinated.

The highest number of coronavirus-related deaths in pregnant people in a single month of the pandemic was reported in August 2021, according to a Sept. 29 health alert from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The CDC estimates only about 31% of pregnant people are fully vaccinated. This number is even lower for Black pregnant people, at 15.6%.

Oct 15, 2021

Survivors and Seeking Help: Suicide Prevention and Recovery

Depression inflicts a pain and numbness that engulfs people in ways that no aching of the body ever could. Like any other disease, it spreads until a person is fully consumed. Yet many in our society are reluctant to speak of the disease’s worst outcome. In 2019 the U.S. Centers for Disease Control reported there […]

May 25, 2021

Sexuality in the Age of COVID

The COVID-19 pandemic has forced many people to spend a large amount of time alone, and more and more people have turned to sex therapists to explore their sexuality. 

May 18, 2021

Visually Impaired People Face Difficulties Throughout Pandemic

Some visually impaired people in Central Texas have struggled to schedule vaccines and faced other COVID-19-related challenges that might not occur to sighted people. About 700,000 people in Texas are visually impaired, according to the most recent numbers from the National Federation of the Blind. In a series of interviews with Reporting Texas, visually impaired Austinites and their advocates in Central Texas discussed the difficulty of getting vaccinated for COVID-19 and the challenge of avoiding the illness during the pandemic.

May 17, 2021

Black Mothers in Central Texas Helping Others Deal With Postpartum Depression

Black mothers in Central Texas are rising up to support women coping with postpartum depression, which disproportionately affects Black women.

Apr 01, 2021

A League Together

For the past year, soccer for many has been a perpetual COVID-19 red card, a harsh penalty suspending play for players for only trying to do the right thing during a pandemic. On March 15 of last year, the city of Austin implemented a lockdown that prohibited gatherings of more than 250 people. For the […]

Dec 08, 2020

Black-Owned Plant-Based Restaurants Taking Root in Texas

Many African-Americans simply are not used to having plant-based ingredients replace meat in the cuisine they grew up with. However, an increasing number of black-owned plant-based restaurants around the state are showing that going meatless is becoming more popular among African-American Texans.

Oct 17, 2020

UT Greek Life Struggles to Adhere to Pandemic Protocols

On the 2020 season’s first game-day Saturday, things seemed pretty normal for a University of Texas football weekend — pre-pandemic normal. At the Texas Rho fraternity house, dozens of UT students partied together in person. A leaked SnapChat video from inside the event showed attendees singing “The Eyes of Texas,” and standing shoulder to shoulder underneath a balcony packed […]

May 28, 2020

Sex Workers Struggle as COVID-19 Pandemic Continues

Bars, strip clubs and brothels have been shut down as non-essential businesses across the country closed for the coronavirus pandemic, leaving many sex workers out of a job. “It has completely stopped business,” said Mistress Natalie King, a dominatrix in New York City. “There are no in-person sessions to be had.” And unlike millions of […]

Apr 29, 2020

Austin-based Roommates Develop Low-cost Ventilator Unit Amid COVID-19 Pandemic

Two Austin-based roommates have developed a low-cost ventilator unit made from parts widely available around the world in response to global shortages amid the COVID-19 pandemic. In vitro testing on pig lungs for their prototype could begin soon at Dell Medical School. 

Apr 22, 2020

Austin Life Coach Gives Recommendations for Living Through COVID-19

As people adjust to their new realities and settle into new comfort zones, an Austin-based life coach shares 10 recommendations to better deal with life during the pandemic.

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