Christine Vestal covers mental health and drug addiction for Stateline. Before joining Pew she covered health care, the environment, energy, information technology and telecommunications for a variety of news outlets, including McGraw-Hill, the Financial Times and Post-Newsweek Business Information. At Stateline, she has covered the legal and political battles over the Affordable Care Act and expansion of Medicaid to more low-income adults. She has also written about children’s health, Medicaid, mental health, wellness, and a wide variety of public health issues. Currently, Vestal is focusing on the prescription painkiller and heroin epidemic, including efforts to stem overdose deaths by making addiction treatment with medications more widely available.
Child vaccination rates dip after COVID and continue downward spiral
By: Christine Vestal - January 22, 2023
Child vaccination rates dipped into dangerous territory during the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic, when schools were shuttered, and most doctors were only seeing emergency patients. But instead of recovering after schools reopened in 2021, those historically low rates worsened, according to new data from the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Experts […]
Suspected suicide attempts by youth rose sharply during the pandemic
By: Christine Vestal - June 18, 2022
Suspected suicide attempts by young people ages 6-19 reported to U.S. poison centers increased 27% between 2015 and 2020, according to a new study from the University of Virginia. The findings are based on cases reported to the National Poison Data System as suspected suicides, which includes attempted suicides and deaths. The total number of suspected child […]