UNMH

Yasmin Khan / KUNM

 

Hundreds of masked protesters in white coats, green scrubs, and street clothes gathered six feet apart for a "die-in" yesterday outside the University of New Mexico Health Sciences Library to highlight anti-Black and anti-Indigenous racism embedded in the health care system. Protesters honored the memory of George Floyd, denounced police brutality and white supremacy in medicine, and demanded change in their institution.

Mauricio de Segovia

Hospital staff are some of the most exposed essential workers during the pandemic, but cleaning staff who work in coronavirus units at UNM Hospitals say they don’t have the same access to personal protective equipment (PPE) or training on how to stay safe at work as other staff. While UNMH has COVID safety practices in place, staff say they don't reach employees who don't speak English or have regular internet access. Cleaning crew members are asking for hazard pay, better PPE, training on new cleaning chemicals, and paid quarantine leave if they are exposed.

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Hospital custodians and houskeeping staff say that even though they clean the COVID wards and are in the room with patients, they aren't given adequate personal protective equipment. Three people we spoke with said because it is commonly known among other hospital staff that the sanitation workers are more exposed to the virus, they are treated unfairly and subject to discrimination. 

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Access to medical care could not be more important than it is at this moment.  And plenty of people either don’t have health insurance or lost it because they lost their jobs during the pandemic. On Episode 62, we look into what options exist for the underemployed and recently unemployed, what a hospital worker experienced when she got a $1,500 COVID-19 test bill she was not expecting, and we talk to the superintendent of insurance to discover what the state is doing to help.

Marco Verch via Flickr CC

We devote episode 52 to some of the many people working on the front lines of the pandemic caring for COVID patients in New Mexico, sometimes without enough protective gear to feel safe. We ask them what urgent calls to reopen the economy sound like from where they're standing. And we find out how it's going for them, whether they're supported and heard by the institutions they work in. 

Hannah Colton / KUNM

In episode 34,  we discover how prepared hospitals and health care facilities in New Mexico really are. And we go all over the state for this one.

Courtesy of Sharon Argenbright

Negotiations continue between UNM Hospitals (UNMH) and the union that represents about 4500 of its nurses, aides, housekeepers and other workers. The union is holding out for better compensation in their new contract, which is meant to begin July 1st.

UNMH Offering Group-Based Prenatal Program

Dec 17, 2018
Courtesy UNM Midwives

 

Research has shown that newborns have healthier birth weights when their mothers receive proper prenatal care and that stress can contribute to early deliveries.

The University of New Mexico Hospital's CenteringPregnancy program for expecting mothers focuses on the social aspects of maternal health.

 

Kelly Gallagher, the head of the hospital’s Midwifery Division, is in charge of the program.

UNMH Reverses Surgery Payment Policy

Nov 2, 2017
Sasin Tipchai / Creative Commons via Pixabay

The Albuquerque-area’s public safety net hospital can no longer demand half upfront from uninsured folks getting medically necessary surgeries as of late last week. But advocates say the hospital has yet to fully put this change into practice.

'Time Is Brain' When You Have A Stroke

Apr 26, 2017
Ed Williams/KUNM

Stroke is one of the most common medical emergencies. The effects of a stroke last a lifetime, and treating the condition can be extremely expensive. But if doctors can diagnose and treat a stroke quickly, they can reduce the damage a patient suffers. 

UNMH Low-Income Money Heads To Ballot

Aug 24, 2016
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The Bernalillo County Commission voted Tuesday night to put a measure that would continue funding treatment for low-income and uninsured patients at UNM Hospital on November’s ballot.

UNM Hospital has been getting around $90 million a year in taxpayer dollars to pay for medical care for patients who can’t afford it. Now voters here will be asked to choose if they want to keep that money coming.

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UnitedHealthcare is dropping insurance coverage for its Medicaid patients at the University of New Mexico Hospital. The decision comes after months of negotiations.

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The University of New Mexico Board of Regents recently made changes to how UNM’s Health Sciences Center is governed. UNM Hospital, UNM Medical School, UNM College of Nursing – these are all part of the Health Sciences Center.

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Bioethical questions around the use of fetal tissue in research have been central to a House panel’s investigation, but opponents say it’s all political theater aimed at restricting abortion. The debate is unfolding in New Mexico, as both an Albuquerque abortion clinic and researchers here respond to that panel’s queries.

Courtesy of Dr. Fiona Sinclair

  In order to help babies that are born too early, you’ve got to experiment on fetal tissue. At least that’s what scientists say. A House panel investigation of this kind of research has raised its profile. We went to the University of New Mexico Hospital to find out how fetal tissue is used.

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University of New Mexico regents voted Monday, March 14, to put themselves in charge of the Health Sciences Center despite public objections to the sudden shift.

Get Your Flu Vaccine At A Drive-Thru

Oct 17, 2015
Allison Giron/KUNM

Influenza is the 8th leading cause of death in the United States, according to the CDC.

UNM Hospital provides free flu shots and even drive­-thru clinics to help minimize the spread of the virus. Drivers are able to pull into a parking lot and get in line. Medical student volunteers then walk to their cars with syringes and paperwork.

Searching For Answers On Fetal Alcohol Syndrome

Oct 7, 2014
Ed Williams-KUNM

Terry Trujillo’s family has been facing an ordeal that would be familiar to a surprising number of Americans. Holding back tears, she remembers the moment she had to explain to her adopted nephew that his severe learning disabilities, memory problems and behavior issues were the result of Fetal Alcohol Syndrome.

“The little boy would say ‘Well what’s that, what do you mean?’ And it’s hard to sit there and tell a child it means that your mother drank alcohol while you were in her stomach, and to see their face. Because they know it’s wrong,” Trujillo said.

APD's Mental Health Quandry

Apr 16, 2014
Wikimedia Commons

KUNM Call In Show Thu. 4/17 8a:  The Albuquerque Police Department recently made national headlines for the shooting of a man in the Sandia foothills who was mentally ill.

How can Albuquerque police learn to interact with people with mental illness more effectively? What improvements does the U.S. Department of Justice say they need to make?