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Noelia González

Children’s Hospital’s new center to focus on preventive healthcare programs

After almost two years of planning, on April 28, UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital Oakland announced that its Center for Community Health and Engagement had been born. What they call “The Center” will function within Children’s Hospital to coordinate programs focusing on preventive healthcare for children and their families. “The hospital has a huge community benefit portfolio,” said Dr. Barbara Staggers, chief of adolescent medicine at the hospital and executive director at the new center. “Since the Center is just getting off…

Oakland Zoo partners up with Madagascar’s Centre ValBio to save lemurs

There’s something furry connecting the distant island of Madagascar, off the eastern coast of Africa, with Oakland in the East Bay: lemurs. These charismatic primates are the focus of conservation efforts at Centre ValBio, a state-of-the-art lemur research station in Madagascar’s Ranomafana National Park. The Oakland Zoo has partnered with the center to join their efforts. On Thursday, zoological manager Margaret Rousser and lead keeper Elizabeth Abram presented “Action for Lemurs,” one of the talks in the zoo’s Conservation Speaker Series. An…

On Earth Day 2015, a look at the wild species that live in the East Bay regional parks

The California Grizzly bear has been immortalized on the state’s flag, but the four-leg symbol is not around California anymore—at least not since 1924, when the last specimen was spotted in Santa Barbara County. However, other creatures inhabit California’s land, water and sky. The East Bay Regional Park District (EBRPD) includes more than 100,000 acres, 65 parks and more than 1,200 miles of trails in Alameda and Contra Costa Counties. These parks, like the Martin Luther King Jr. Regional Shoreline in…

Therapist Isadora Alman wants doctors to ask patients: “Are you enjoying your sex life?”

“Are you enjoying your sex life?” That’s a question sex therapist Isadora Alman would like primary healthcare providers to ask their patients, along with other basic questions often asked of people coming in for a check-up, like inquiries about smoking or drinking. But this doesn’t happen, said Alman, who is also a California licensed marriage and family therapist, because, she believes, a satisfying sex life isn’t considered an important part of health. She addressed this topic last month during a…

Oakland community gathers to showcase environmental organizations at Earthexpo

Under the morning clouds, the Frank Ogawa Plaza in downtown Oakland was chilly as organizers got ready for the 20th Annual Oakland Earthexpo Environmental Sustainability Fair. At 9 am on Wednesday, around 100 tables were in place to start the fair, but most of them were empty. Slowly, vendors began to drift in, setting up their signs, merchandising and sign-up forms, as the sun started to warm the place and curious people began to visit the stands. But by noon,…

After measles outbreak, interest in vaccines increases

It’s not over yet. The measles outbreak, which started in December, 2014, at a Disneyland theme park in Orange County, is still ongoing in the United States, and has now reached Mexico and Canada, where more than 100 people have been reported to have the disease. By March 6, 17 US states and the District of Columbia reported measles cases, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) website. The CDC is only one of the many health…

Oakland researchers propose a way to explain why what you eat may affect your behavior

Vitamin D and Omega-3 fatty acids improve cognitive function and behavior in people with certain mental disorders, studies have shown. But scientists haven’t been sure how. Now, researchers at Children’s Hospital Oakland Research Institute (CHORI) have come up with a possible explanation. After extensively reviewing the scientific literature, Dr. Rhonda Patrick and Dr. Bruce Ames tried to connect the dots to find what is responsible for linking two micronutrients—Vitamin D and Omega-3 fatty acids—to behavior and even to psychiatric disorders,…

Mokelumne art exhibition travels to Oakland to share river’s beauty and raise awareness on water conservation

“Way beyond the water source to millions of people downstream, and water to irrigate farmland, the river is a wildlife sanctuary,” said landscape artist Julie Trail, speaking about the mystical Mokelumne River. Trail is one of the 50 artists participating in an exhibit organized by AmadorArts, currently on display at East Bay Municipal Utility District (EBMUD) in downtown Oakland. The exhibit focuses on the Mokelumne River, which extends about 90 miles from the Sierra Nevada to the East Bay, and…

Children’s film festival inspires creativity

Children of all ages swarmed in and out of planetarium theaters at the Chabot Space and Science Center this weekend for the 7th annual Bay Area International Children’s Film Festival. With two full days of short films from all over the world geared for different age groups, co-founder Jim Capobianco said the festival was meant to inspire kids and their families to be creative, and to expose them to other cultures and filmmaking. “I wanted to find films that were…

Measles outbreak reaches East Bay

By January 26, 73 cases of measles had been confirmed among California residents, according to the California Department of Public Health (CDPH). Among those cases, 50 have been linked to an initial exposure at a Disney park.

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