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A new brand of doctor targets the unhealthy in rural Tennessee

Brent Staton, a primary care physician in Cookeville, heads an organization called Cumberland Center for Healthcare Innovation, a network of affiliated, independent doctors in small towns and rural counties around the state.  But what it is, is a band of primary care doctors in about 50 counties across Tennessee who want to collaborate as a way to sustain their independence in changing the health care system — and as a path to making their patients, and communities, healthier.

Rural Electrical Cooperatives Turn to the Internet

"This is the New Deal" saud Sheila Allgood, a manager of Bolt, the broadband subsidiary of the Northeast Oklahoma Electric Cooeprative. "Now we are doing what cable and telecom companies don't want to do, just like we did for electricity when the big private power companies didn't want to come here."

Rural areas pay more for health insurance

Colorado's rural areas can't escape higher health insurance costs because it costs more to deliver health care. That's the conclusion Monday from the state Division of Insurance, which was ordered to study the problem of higher insurance prices on the Western Slope and in other rural areas. The Division looked at Colorado's nine geographic rating areas for health insurance.

A new rift in the farmlands

The Christian Science Monitor describes a “a new class divide,” this one in rural America.  Patrick Jonsson tells us that a new class of “super farms” is concentrating income in fewer hands. “The widening gulf between the haves and have nots is not limited to the Rust Belt’s cast-off manufacturing workers, working class suburbanites, or inner-city poor working on a stagnant minimum wage,” Jonsson writes. “The same trends have taken hold in farm country, though in different forms.

Lamenting Hillbilly Elegy

We’re now approaching the Everest level in our march to the total narcissistic society:  Thirty-somethings are writing their memoirs.

Washington breaches dike to convert farmland to fish habitat

Excavators breached a dike Monday that for more than a century had protected farmland, furthering a state and federal plan to convert thousands of acres of agricultural fields into salmon habitat in the Skagit Delta.  Excavators started digging a gap in the 12-foot-high dike in the morning. By late afternoon, Puget Sound’s high tide was spreading saltwater over 131 acres that previously grew crops such as broccoli, red potatoes and vegetable seeds.

Large- animal sedative implicated in human drug overdoses.

Carfentanil a drug used to sedate elephants and other large animals which is 100 times as potent as the fentanyl have been found to be mixed with or passed off as heroin. The appearance of carfentanil, one of the most potent opioids known to investigators, has added another angle to cases of drug overdoses, heroin and abuse of fentanyl.

How to combat Asian carp? Get an alligator gar

's a toothy giant that can grow longer than a horse and heavier than a refrigerator, a fearsome-looking prehistoric fish that plied U.S. waters from the Gulf of Mexico to Illinois until it disappeared from many states half a century ago. Persecuted by anglers and deprived of places to spawn, the alligator gar — with a head that resembles an alligator and two rows of needle-like teeth — survived mainly in Southern states in the tributaries of the Mississippi River and Gulf of Mexico after being declared extinct in several states farther north.

Marijuana Competition Coming to Oregon State Fair

Alongside the dog, horse, and livestock shows, as well as other a competition featuring the Beaver State's best home-brewers of beer, the cannabis competition will award the three traditional ribbons (blue, purple, yellow) in three categories of marijuana plant (sativa, indica, hybrid). The inclusion of marijuana in a state fair speaks to its suddenly booming reputation as a cash crop and its growers as the future farmers of America, at least in Oregon, Washington, Colorado, Alaska, and Washington, D.C., where, since 2012, voters have approved legal recreational use of marijuana.

State toxicologist: Claim that NC well water was safe was 'scientifically untrue'

Emails obtained through public-records requests by a conservation group show that State Toxicologist Ken Rudo forcefully resisted the McCrory administration last year as it moved to alter the do-not-drink letters sent to hundreds of well owners near coal-ash pits owned by Duke Energy.  In March 2015, after Rudo had drafted the letters advising well owners — many of whom had elevated levels of the carcinogen hexavalent chromium — against using their water for drinking or cooking, department administrators pushed Duke Energy’s position that the water would generally be considered safe to drin


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