• Employees of the Kern County Superintendent of Schools walk along Truxtun Avenue with others at the Links for Life "Lacen' it Up Walk," which kicked off Breast Cancer Awareness month, in this Oct. 1, 2014 photo.

    Opportunities to fight and prevent breast cancer in October

    One in eight women in the U.S. will develop breast cancer during their lifetime, according to the American Cancer Association, which notes that Breast Cancer Awareness Month — october — offers a long list of ways to do something about it. San Joaquin Community Hospital is holding two events.

  • Wendy Bailey, a member of the Kern Valley Search and Rescue, is all smiles as she hikes down a peak. She does this despite the fact that she's afraid of heights.

    Kern Valley Search and Rescue volunteer find happiness in heroic deeds

    A decade ago, Wendy Bailey, 55, could never have predicted she’d be saving lives as a member of Kern Valley Search and Rescue (KVSAR). Back then she was living in Valencia, a stay-at-home mom with three kids. Her resume included jobs as a letter carrier and elementary school yard supervisor. But

  • Surprising ways smoking affects your appearance

    Smoking is a habit that causes changes in your skin, teeth and hair. The more cigarettes you smoke, the faster the changes you’ll start to see in your body. According to the latest statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 42.1 million people 18 years or older in the United

  • InSpire Salon & Spa owner and Evolve Volumizer specialist Leah Lay resets Jeri James' hair with the Evolve Volumizer hair integration system, which is made with 100 percent human hair.

    Evolve Volumizer restoring self-confidence

    After 10 years dreading pool time with her grandchildren, Jeri James spent nearly the entire summer this year splashing around, having fun and most importantly, making memories. James, 61, has a mild autoimmune imbalance that has caused noticeable hair loss on the crown of her head. “For once,

  • Aspiranet employees learn about the signs and symptoms of mental health disorders in youth.

    Nationwide initiative focuses on youth mental health in schools

    Mental illness has been a taboo subject in the room for many years, but now it’s time to break the ice and get the discussion started. That’s where the Youth Mental Health First Aid in Kern County comes in. “The goal is to saturate Kern County with training,” said Tatia Hunter-Jennings, prevention

  • Key life ingredients to healthy mental health

    When it comes to personal health, you might think of things like your weight, cholesterol levels, sun exposure, maybe even your last dental checkup. All of those are very important to manage, but when asked about general health, rarely do most of us think of our mental health first. Experts tell

  • Emily Bazar is a senior writer for the CHCF Center for Health Reporting, which covers health issues in California. Located at the USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism, the center is funded by the nonpartisan California HealthCare Foundation.

    ASK EMILY: How to price shop for medical treatment

    Another in a series of Q&A columns answering consumers’ questions about California’s new medical world. Whether you get your health insurance from your employer, Covered California or the open market, more of you are picking — or being forced into — high-deductible plans. Although these plans

  • A patient rests during a PET scan at Central Cardiology in Bakersfield. The equipment was recently installed at Central Cardiology, and provides physicians a clearer image of heart-related issues.

    New cardiac imaging machine brings revolutionary technology to Kern County

    Precise, reliable information is something every doctor seeks when treating patients, but it’s not always been easy to get in Bakersfield. That is beginning to change. The latest example is Central Cardiology’s newly unveiled Positron Emission Tomography, or PET, imaging machine, which provides

  • The Center for Neuro Skills is celebrating 35 years.

    Centre for Neuro Skills celebrates 35 years of work

    When Mark Ashley’s brother suffered a traumatic brain injury during his service in the Navy, doctors told his parents that treatment options were limited, if not non-existent. Ashley’s mother refused to accept those terms. Instead, the Ashley family rallied around and provided around-the-clock

  • San Joaquin Community Hospital.

    San Joaquin Community Hospital earns award for COPD care

    San Joaquin Community Hospital was rated high performing for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease care in the U.S. News & World Report Best Hospitals for Common Care ratings that were released recently. U.S. News evaluated hospitals in five procedures and medical conditions — heart bypass

  • Emily Bazar

    ASK EMILY: Obamacare tax already affecting worker health plans

    Another in a series of Q&A columns answering consumers’ questions about California’s new medical world. For the millions of Californians with job-based health coverage, this one’s for you. And it’s a doozy. Starting in 2018, a hefty Obamacare excise tax — known informally as the “Cadillac

  • Kern County insurance rate changes

    ASK EMILY: Go beyond the headlines for rate hike reality

    Another in a series of Q&A columns answering consumers’ questions about California’s new medical world. Some Californians got good news recently about the price of their health insurance. But as always, it pays to know the details. Covered California, the state health insurance exchange,

  • People wait in line at a Clinica Sierra Vista facility in this file photo. Clinica Sierra Vista was just awarded $483,333 in Affordable Care Act money to help operate a soon-to-be-finished health center in east Bakersfield to be called the Baker Street Village Community Health Center.

    Feds award Clinica $483,000 to help operate new health center

    Clinica Sierra Vista, a large chain of health-care clinics for the poor based in Bakersfield, was just awarded $483,333 in Affordable Care Act money to help operate a soon-to-be-finished health center in east Bakersfield. The money represents 20 to 25 percent of the funds that will be needed

  • Dr. Tommy Lee accepts the accreditation certificate from the American Heart Association's Katie Kinney, regional director for quaity and system improvement.

    Memorial's cardiac accreditation a sign of maturing medical environment

    In another sign of the continuing maturity of Kern County’s health system, the American Heart Association announced Friday it was giving Memorial Hospital an accreditation that recognizes the Bakersfield hospital’s acute cardiac care program. During a ceremony at the hospital, officials from the

  • Clinica Sierra Vista faculty member Dr. Ryan Cabatbat, left, and Dr. Adan Romero, a resident, with the residency program director, Dr. Carol Stewart, at Kern Medical Center.

    Training for family medicine doctors moving, growing

    The family medicine residency program at Kern Medical Center is winding down, with five residents having recently begun their third and final year of training at the county hospital. After they graduate, the program will cease to operate there. The Kern County Board of Supervisors voted to close

  • Grant money to go toward breast cancer screening

    The Anthem Blue Cross Foundation has awarded $40,000 to the American Cancer Society to help Omni Family Health provide breast cancer education and screening. Josue Fernandez, Omni Family Health’s development and communications coordinator, said the grant will help them increase breast cancer