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President Barack Obama

In a speech on climate change at Georgetown University, President Barack Obama announced a comprehensive “Climate Action Plan” to reduce U.S. pollution responsible for climate change, better coordinate international efforts to solve the problem of climate change, and provide additional protection from the effects of climate change that have already begun. Read more»

Arizona saw a 35 percent drop in teen births between 2007 and 2011, tied with Utah for the steepest drop in the nation, according to a new report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Teen births in Arizona plummeted 35 percent between 2007 and 2011, tying with Utah for the steepest decline in the nation, according to new numbers released Thursday. Read more»

The 2011 Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance report, covering various dimensions of substance abuse, ranked Arizona as having the nation’s highest rate (34.6 percent) of high schoolers who were offered, sold or given an illegal drug by someone on school property. Arizona also had the highest rate of binge drinking at 26.5 percent. (with video) Read more»

Lead poisoning has been recognized as a major health problem since at least the 1930s, but it continues to threaten many Americans, particularly children. The CDC issued new guidelines last week, estimating that roughly 535,000 youngsters may have unsafe levels of the toxic metal in their blood. Read more»

How the gun lobby has debilitated federal action on firearms and what President Obama can do about it. Read more»

President Obama has directed the Centers for Disease Control to research gun violence as part of his legislative package on gun control. The CDC hasn't pursued this kind of research since 1996 when the National Rifle Association lobbied Congress to cut funding for it. Read more»

Vehicle crashes have long been the leading cause of violent death in America, but that dubious distinction may soon belong to gunshot deaths. Read more»

Researchers from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have issued two new studies of sexually transmitted behavior just in time for Valentine's Day. And, let's just say... the results ain't pretty. Read more»

Propping up a patient's hospital bed at a 30-degree angle can help prevent hospital-acquired pneumonia. Using alcohol wipes kills staph bugs, but you need bleach wipes to kill C. diff germs. High-protein snacks can help prevent bed sores. However, most patients don't know these things. And doctors and nurses can easily overlook these basic care practices. Read more»

U.S. gun policy is set by both state and federal law. We previously published an explainer on the ways states have eased gun restrictions. But federal policy, too, has become more gun friendly in recent years — and we're not just talking about the 2008 Supreme Court ruling that struck down the handgun ban in Washington, D.C. Read more»

The mass shooting in Newtown has reignited a national debate on gun control. Some facts are clear — there has been a massive increase in gun sales. Some things are not so clear — such as whether there is causation between more guns and more violent crimes. And some are contrary to the general impression — for example, the rate of gun murders is down, not up. Read more»

Kristin Fields holds her 18-month-old daughter Leah as Maricopa County Department of Public Health nurse Pearl Napa administers vaccines at a clinic in Glendale. Fields said vaccines are vital to protecting her daughter’s health.

While most states allow parents to opt out of vaccinations for medical or religious reasons, Arizona is among a minority allowing exemptions for philosophical or personal reasons. A Cronkite News Special Report looks at how exemptions are prompting fears of disease outbreaks. Read more»

Isaias Saldanaje gets a flu shot Thursday at a free vaccination clinic the Maricopa County Department of Public Health offered for National Immunization Week.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released a report this week declaring an unusually early and intense start to flu season. Health officials say Arizona is seeing a fairly normal start and while it’s difficult to predict how things will unfold, they are prepared for things to get worse. Read more»

Will Humble, director of the Arizona Department of Health Services.

Two people in Arizona received tainted pain shots with medicine from the Massachusetts facility linked to 25 deaths from fungal meningitis, according to the state's top health officer. Nationwide, more than 300 people in 18 states received the contaminated injections that have caused fungal meningitis. Read more»

Arizona women had fewer babies in 2011 for the fifth straight year, due in large part to tighter wallets, social changes, lower teen pregnancy rates and departures among the Hispanic population. Read more»

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