Author Archives: Jennifer Weingart

CMU professor uses audio drama to help kids with autism

(L toR) Al Wildy, the voice of Dad, Jay Armstrong, Voice of Matt and Nick Swan, Voice of Tyler record The Tortoise and the Hare.

(L toR) Al Wildy, the voice of Dad, Jay Armstrong, Voice of Matt and Nick Swan, Voice of Tyler record The Tortoise and the Hare.

One in every 68 American children is diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder.

Most of these children will receive some sort of traditional behavioral therapy, but new ways to treat the disorders are constantly popping up. Sometimes from the most unexpected places.

Recently, a researcher at Central Michigan University created an audio drama to help kids learn social skills.
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Michigan’s hospitals rank across the board on safety


A new ranking of the safety of Michigan’s hospitals show most hospitals are passing.

The Leapfrog Group used survey data and information from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to assign each hospital a letter grade.

Out of 80 hospitals in the state, 26 received A’s, 13 B’s, and 37 C’s– that’s 95 percent of all hospitals rated. Three facilities received D’s and one, in Houghton county, in the UP, received an F.
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Health officials stress infant vaccines on National Infant Immunization Week


Health educators are using National Infant Immunization Week this week to talk about the importance of getting babies vaccinated.

Infants typically receive their first vaccine, which protects against Hepatitis B, at birth. Over the next two years the CDC recommends children receive 24 vaccines to prevent nine serious diseases.

Amanda Thompson is a nursing supervisor at the Health Department of Northwest Michigan. She said it’s also important for adults to keep up with vaccines.

“Those infants can’t get a lot of those vaccines until they’re two, four, six months and they’re not fully vaccinated until they’re older,” Thompson said. “It’s really important for parents and grandparents and anyone who’s around children to also be up-to-date on their vaccinations.”

Most vaccines are for diseases that are unommon in the U.S. Things like polio, measles and meningitis.

Thompson said they are rare because most people have been immunized.

“One of the current challenges that we see is educated young parents and community members who have never seen the effects of these devastating diseases,” Thompson said.

She says if people choose not to get the vaccines they weaken the system making more people vulnerable to more disease.