Health

Seventy-two Vermont communities add fluoride to their water system to help keep prevent tooth decay. But on town meeting day in Bennington, voters there said they don't want fluoride added to their water.

Taylor Dobbs / VPR/file

This week marks the 47th year that Washington County Sen. Bill Doyle has distributed his annual Town Meeting Day survey. This year's survey includes questions about taxes, the environment and the legalization of marijuana.

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A new study from the University of Vermont found that Vermont doctors are failing to follow best practices about half the time when prescribing antipsychotic medicine to children.

The use of antipsychotics has become increasingly common in recent years, said the study’s lead author Dr. David Rettew.

“But there’s actually very little data that speaks to whether this is an appropriate increase or whether this reflects an overuse of this class of medications,” he said.

Angela Evancie / VPR/file

Gov. Peter Shumlin wants to raise $90 million in state revenues to pay for a wide ranging health care reform agenda. And while a key House committee is backing his push for new taxes, the House Committee on Health Care looks to be leaning toward a tax on sugar-sweetened beverages to raise the money, not the payroll tax preferred by Shumlin.

Angela Evancie / VPR

A bill that would make it more difficult for parents to avoid mandatory vaccinations for their children is unlikely to be debated this year. Legislative leaders say they have other, more pressing, priorities.

Toby Talbot / AP

Childhood vaccines: for the vast majority of parents it's a necessary part of protecting the health of their children. But for some parents, concerns over the number of vaccines, the schedule of taking them, and possible side-effects lead them to a different conclusion.

Angela Evancie / VPR

With the national outbreak of measles, there's been a lot of focus at the Statehouse on exemptions to Vermont's mandatory childhood immunization law. But some lawmakers want to be certain that all teachers are fully immunized as well.

elapela / iStock

Whether it’s eating organic, trying supplements or jumping on board with trends such as the Paleo diet, it seems that everywhere we look there is advice on how to eat healthy. And frankly, a lot of the advice can be conflicting and confusing.

People don’t vaccinate their children for many reasons: they worry about what’s in vaccines, don’t trust corporations that make them; fear long-term effects; believe government shouldn’t interfere with personal choice; and think their kids are protected if most others are vaccinated.

FuatKose / iStock

Backers of a tax on sugar-sweetened beverages say their plan is needed to help curb the rising epidemic of obesity in Vermont. But opponents argue that it's wrong to use the taxing power of the state to try to influence personal behavior.

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