Lauren Silverman

Lauren Silverman is the Health, Science and Technology reporter/blogger for KERA News. Before joining KERA, she worked at NPR’s Weekend All Things Considered in Washington D.C. Lauren produced national stories on everything from the politics of climate change to the future of online education, including a piece on neighborhood farms in Compton, Cal., that won a National Association of Black Journalism’s ‘Salute to Excellence Award.’

As a freelance reporter, Lauren has written and recorded stories in English and Spanish for a variety of news outlets, including American Public Media’s Marketplace, NPR’s Morning Edition, All Things Considered and Latino USA.

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All Tech Considered
7:46 am
Sat November 29, 2014

In 'Disaster City,' Learning To Use Robots To Face Ebola

Since it was built by the Texas A&M Engineering Extension Service in 1998, 90,000 emergency responders have come to "Disaster City" to climb over mangled steel and through derailed chemical trains.
Lauren Silverman KERA

Originally published on Sat November 29, 2014 12:05 pm

About three hours southeast of Dallas, there's a city that's been hit by almost every disaster you could imagine including earthquakes, hurricanes and even bombs. It's appropriately called Disaster City.

It's a training site for first responders, but the facility is looking ahead to a different kind of disaster — infectious diseases like Ebola, and robots may play a key role.

One of the first things you see when you enter Disaster City is an enormous pile of rubble.

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Shots - Health News
4:31 pm
Thu October 23, 2014

FDA Cracks Down On Fake Ebola Cures Sold Online

The problem isn't just that fake cures are worthless, doctors say. Fraudulent claims also give some people the false sense that the product can protect them from getting sick.
iStockphoto

Originally published on Fri October 24, 2014 11:59 am

Snake venom, vitamin C, Nano Silver and herbs have all been pitched online as a treatment or cure for Ebola. None has the backing of the FDA.

"Unfortunately during public health threats such as Ebola, fraudulent products that claim to prevent, treat, cure disease often appear on the market almost overnight," says Gary Coody, the FDA's national health fraud coordinator. In particular, the FDA wants consumers to beware Ebola "cures" peddled online.

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Science
4:56 pm
Sat September 20, 2014

Mammoth On The Move: Rare, Nearly-Intact Skeleton Heads To Dallas

Mammuthus columbi, the Columbian mammoth, used to be common in America, but went extinct about 10,000 years ago. The specimen found south of Dallas is estimated to be 20,000 - 40,000 years old.
Illustration by Karen Carr Perot Museum of Nature and Science

Originally published on Sat September 20, 2014 9:21 pm

For tens of thousands of years, the skeleton of a giant mammoth lay in one place: a gravel pit about 50 miles south of Dallas.

A few months ago, the bones were unearthed — and now they're on the move. Paleontologists are carefully packing them up, preparing them to travel to the Perot Museum of Nature and Science, in Dallas.

A Gravel Pit Reveals Its Secret

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Digital Life
4:33 pm
Wed September 10, 2014

Airline Social Media 'Command Centers' Direct Complaint Traffic

Originally published on Wed September 10, 2014 6:29 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

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Mental Health
7:46 am
Sat May 31, 2014

One Wealthy Couple's Mission To Save Marriages, En Masse

Self-help guru Harville Hendrix and his wife Helen LaKelly Hunt are offering free relationship therapy workshops to Dallas-area couples. Many of the couples who attend have never gone to relationship counseling.
Courtesy of Darren Rollinson

Originally published on Sat May 31, 2014 6:29 pm

At a church in South Dallas, in one of the poorest parts of town, the room is packed with hundreds of couples. They're sitting, holding hands and staring into each other's eyes.

Their hosts, multi-millionaire couple Harville Hendrix and Helen LaKelly Hunt, are on a mission: to save marriages. They're trying to saturate the city with relationship counseling at workshops like this one, aiming to reach couples who wouldn't or couldn't otherwise afford to attend conventional marriage counseling.

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Digital Life
4:44 am
Tue March 18, 2014

Investors Pool Money Online To Buy Real Estate

Originally published on Tue March 18, 2014 5:27 am

The crowdfunding trend — where people donate money through sites like Kickstarter to back projects — has grown quickly. Now investors are pooling their money online to buy real estate.

Shots - Health News
3:22 am
Mon February 10, 2014

New Heat Treatment Has Changed Lives For Some With Severe Asthma

Virginia Rady, 28, holds her old nebulizer at her home in Dallas. Rady was diagnosed with chronic persistent asthma at age 2. She underwent a series of three outpatient surgeries between December 2012 and February 2013 for a procedure known as bronchial thermoplasty. She says the procedure has changed her life, allowing her to remove her nebulizer from her bedside.
Brandon Thibodeaux for NPR

Originally published on Mon February 10, 2014 8:58 am

If you've ever tried to drink something through one of those little red coffee stirrers instead of a full-sized straw, you know what it's like to breathe with asthma.

Twenty-five million Americans have been diagnosed with asthma. And for 10 percent of them, medications like inhaled corticosteroids and long-acting beta agonists aren't enough to keep them out of the hospital.

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Shots - Health News
3:42 am
Fri January 24, 2014

Life-Support Battle Over Pregnant Texas Woman Heads To Court

Erick Munoz stands with an undated family photograph of himself, his wife, Marlise, and their son Mateo. Erick Munoz is now fighting to have a Texas hospital remove his pregnant wife from life support, saying she is brain-dead.
Courtesy Munoz Family MCT/Landov

Originally published on Fri January 24, 2014 8:38 am

The case of the Texas woman, 22 weeks pregnant and being kept on life-support machines at a Forth Worth hospital against her husband's wishes, goes before a judge in North Texas on Friday.

Marlise Munoz has been on respirators and ventilators since she was found unconscious in her home in November, when she was 14 weeks pregnant.

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Shots - Health News
3:28 am
Mon January 20, 2014

In These Gyms, Nobody Cares How You Look In Yoga Pants

Kendall Schrantz, center, stretches after a class at Downsize Fitness in Fort Worth.
Lauren Silverman for NPR

Originally published on Wed January 22, 2014 8:46 am

If you want to lift weights or use the treadmill at Downsize Fitness, you have to be at least 50 pounds overweight.

Kendall Schrantz is a fan – and a member.

The 24-year-old has struggled with her weight since she was in the second grade. The looks she got at other gyms made her uncomfortable.

But now she drives more than an hour to Downsize Fitness in Fort Worth three times a week, just to exercise.

"It's worth every single penny I paid for gas," she said. "It's worth the time I spend on the road, the miles."

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Health
8:17 am
Sun September 1, 2013

Texas Megachurch At Center Of Measles Outbreak

The Eagle Mountain International Church in Newark, Texas, is linked to at least 21 cases of measles.
LM Otero AP

Originally published on Tue March 18, 2014 3:58 pm

Measles was declared eliminated in the U.S. more than a decade ago. But in recent years, the highly infectious disease has cropped up in communities with low vaccination rates, most recently in North Texas.

There, 21 people — the majority of whom have not been immunized — have gotten the disease, which began at a vaccine-skeptical megachurch.

The outbreak began when a man who contracted the virus on a recent trip to Indonesia visited the Eagle Mountain International Church in Newark, about an hour and a half northwest of Dallas.

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