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New Mexico News Plus

August 10, 2016

NM Dept. of Health: Immunize for back to school and beyond– Las Cruces Sun News

This week we're revisiting a topic that is an important cornerstone to public health: immunization. It’s often said immunizations are one of the top public health accomplishments of the last century, and it’s so true. Getting vaccinated is key on the road to good health. As we've talked about in this column before, the New Mexico Department of Health and the New Mexico Immunization Coalition in partnership with Allen Theatres will host an annual back-to-school immunization event for children ages 0 to 18. - - 8/10/2016


$143M settlement to clean up closed mine in NM– Las Cruces Sun News

Federal authorities say the Chevron Mining Inc. has agreed to a $143 million settlement to clean up the closed molybdenum mine near Questa in northern New Mexico. The U.S. Department of Justice announced Tuesday that the proposed partial consent decree, if approved by the court, will provide for the next phase of the cleanup at the Superfund site. - - 8/10/2016

August 9, 2016

NM teachers to get $100 debit cards for suppliesLas Cruces Sun News

Gov. Susana Martinez on Monday announced that all New Mexico teachers will receive a prepaid $100 debit card to help buy classroom materials and supplies for the second year in a row. “As I’ve traveled around the state, teachers often tell me they have to pay for classroom supplies out of their own pocket,” Gov. Martinez said in a news release. “With these debit cards, we’ll help cover the costs while making sure our teachers, kids, and classrooms are equipped for the year ahead.” - - 08/09/2016


Advocates: Bill would enhance state's creative economyLas Cruces Sun News

The business of the arts can help drive the economy in New Mexico, said a group of artists, entrepreneurs and others who gathered recently to talk shop. Staff for U.S. Sen. Tom Udall, D-N.M., hosted the discussion allowing residents to share their ideas about stimulating arts businesses, improving access to the arts and creating more arts-related jobs throughout New Mexico. Discussions surrounded initiatives in the Comprehensive Resources for Entrepreneurs in the Arts to Transform the Economy (CREATE) Act, a bill introduced by Udall in March at a gathering in Washington, D.C. The bill would help artists, entrepreneurs and workers employed in cultural education and tourism better access federal programs and resources to grow their business and share artwork with local communities. - - 08/09/2016

July 27, 2016

NM DOH: A world of trouble from one chronic illnessLas Cruces Sun News

Hepatitis is one of those silent illnesses we talk about often in public health. It’s estimated to be the seventh leading cause of death in the world, and yet it is one of those infections that many people living with it are not even aware they have. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report hepatitis is an infection caused by one of five viruses — hepatitis A, B, C, D or E. That’s why World Hepatitis Day is recognized Thursday, July 28, by the World Health Organization to raise awareness and promote understanding of hepatitis. - - 7/27/16


NM lawmaker eyes ‘right to die’ bill amid court loss- Las Cruces Sun News

A New Mexico state lawmaker is pushing for a law to allow terminally ill patients to end their lives with help from doctors a month after advocates for the practice suffered a court defeat. Rep. Bill McCamley, D-Las Cruces, discussed his proposal Tuesday before a Legislative committee in Albuquerque and could launch the beginning of a heated debate going into the next legislative session for the NM Uniform Health-Care Decisions Act. - - 7/27/16

August 5, 2016

The federal government announced plans Thursday to lift a moratorium on funding of certain controversial experiments that use human stem cells to create animal embryos that are partly human.
The National Institutes of Health is proposing a new policy to permit scientists to get federal money to make embryos, known as chimeras, under certain carefully monitored conditions. -- 8/4/2016

July 20, 2016

Governor names NM Finance Department's secretaryLas Cruces Sun News

The acting secretary of the New Mexico Department of Finance and Administration has been named the new head of the department. The appointment of Dorothy "Duffy" Rodriguez was announced Monday by Gov. Susana Martinez's office. Rodriguez had been the department's acting secretary since the end of May upon the retirement of the previous secretary, Tom Clifford. - - 7/20/16

Report: Binge drinking, cigarette smoking down among NM teens– Las Cruces Sun News

The New Mexico Department of Health announced Tuesday that binge drinking and cigarette smoking is down among New Mexico high school students. Binge drinking, defined as consuming five or more alcoholic drinks on a single occasion in the past 30 days, has fallen by half in the last 10 years, from 28.6 percent in 2005 to 14.6 percent in 2015. Current cigarette smoking, or smoking cigarettes on at least one of the past 30 days, dropped to 11.4 percent in 2015 from 25.7 percent in 2005, according to an NMDoH news release. - - 7/20/16

Albuquerque-area man is NM's 2nd plague case in 2016Las Cruces Sun News

State health officials say New Mexico has a second confirmed human case of plague this year. The Department of Health Services' announcement Tuesday says the latest case involves a 77-year-old man in the Albuquerque area. The new human case follows one involving a 16-year-old Rio Arriba County boy who has since recovered. - - 7/20/16

Feds remove the lesser prairie chicken from protection listLas Cruces Sun News

Facing an uphill court fight, the U.S. government announced Tuesday it was formally removing the lesser prairie chicken from a federal protection list under the Endangered Species Act. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said the move follows recent court rulings in Texas that stripped the lesser prairie chicken of federal protection. However, federal officials say the removal didn't mean authorities had concluded the lesser prairie chicken didn't warrant federal protection for biological reasons. - - 7/20/16

Feds reach deal with Navajos over uranium mine cleanupLas Cruces Sun News

The federal government has reached another settlement with the Navajo Nation that will clear the way for cleanup work to continue at abandoned uranium mines across the largest American Indian reservation in the U.S. The target includes 46 sites that have been identified as priorities due to radiation levels, their proximity to people and the threat of contamination spreading. Cleanup is supposed to be done at 16 abandoned mines while evaluations are planned for another 30 sites and studies will be done at two more to see if water supplies have been compromised. The agreement announced by the U.S. Justice Department settles the tribe’s claims over the costs of engineering evaluations and cleanups at the mines. - - 7/20/16