Sarah McCammon | KERA News

Sarah McCammon

Sarah McCammon worked for Iowa Public Radio as Morning Edition Host from January 2010 until December 2013.

Whether it's online-only consultations, closed pharmacies or having to wonder whether going into an office is safe, the coronavirus has upended access to health care. And it has presented particular challenges for women and reproductive health.

Updated at 5:20 p.m. ET

With abortion rights advocates on the defensive at the federal and state levels over the last four years, Planned Parenthood's advocacy arm is endorsing former Vice President Joe Biden in his race to defeat President Trump.

All adult and adolescent women and girls should be screened for anxiety, according to a new recommendation from a coalition of women's health groups.

The guidelines, issued by the Women's Preventive Services Initiative, advise primary care doctors and other health providers to screen all female patients for anxiety disorders beginning at age 13.

Liberty University President Jerry Falwell Jr. is apologizing for tweeting a racist image that originally appeared in Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam's medical school yearbook.

Falwell said he removed the tweet after talking with African American members of the university community.

OK America, we see your sourdough starters, and your Duolingo sessions and your new cross-stitch hobby, and we raise you a Doorway to Imagination.

That's the backyard branch and wood art piece that David North built with all his social distancing-created free time.

His niece Kimberly Adams, a correspondent for the public radio show Marketplace, tweeted about it.

As the number of confirmed coronavirus cases globally approaches 6.5 million, scientists are racing to develop a vaccine. Currently, there are 10 vaccine candidates in development around the world that are in the beginnings of human trials.

Even before the coronavirus crisis, there were lots of abortion restrictions in South Dakota. But now the procedure has become unavailable, officials say.

"I called to make the appointment and they said the Sioux Falls location was closed [for abortions] because of the coronavirus," said 34-year-old Heather. NPR agreed not to use her last name because she doesn't want people in her largely conservative community to know about her abortion.

Reproductive rights advocates are suing the Trump administration, asking a federal court to suspend restrictions on the abortion drug mifepristone during the coronavirus pandemic.

The drug mifepristone was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration 20 years ago for use in medication abortions in early pregnancy. It's also used to help manage miscarriages for some women trying to avoid surgery.

Republicans say they're moving ahead with plans to gather tens of thousands of people at their presidential nominating convention in North Carolina this summer — even as Democrats weigh their options for convening during the coronavirus pandemic.

The U.S. Navy says 13 sailors from the USS Theodore Roosevelt who had apparently recovered from the coronavirus and had received negative test results have now tested positive for a second time.

Prompted by concerns about racial health disparities, African-American state lawmakers in Virginia are opposing plans by Gov. Ralph Northam to begin a phased reopening of Virginia's economy this week.

Updated 5/14/20

As many states begin taking steps toward reopening their economies, Virginia is set to allow some businesses around the state to open up later this week.

DON GONYEA, HOST:

The coronavirus pandemic has brought about so much uncertainty. We're worried about our health, our finances, our future. On Friday, the U.S. unemployment rate rose to nearly 15%, and no one knows where it ends. For NPR's Life Kit, national correspondent Sarah McCammon talked to one woman who's lived through years of economic uncertainty about how to cope.

SARAH MCCAMMON, BYLINE: Elizabeth White never expected to find herself in the midst of a financial crisis. In her 50s.

ELIZABETH WHITE: So I'm someone who was doing really well until I wasn't.

Updated at 9:44 a.m. ET

As a young woman growing up in a poor farming community in Virginia in the 1940s and '50s, with little information about sex or contraception, sexuality was a frightening thing for Carole Cato and her female friends.

"We lived in constant fear, I mean all of us," she said. "It was like a tightrope. always wondering, is this going to be the time [I get pregnant]?"

A federal appeals court says Arkansas can suspend abortions during the coronavirus pandemic.

Planned Parenthood clinics in Colorado, New Mexico and Nevada are reporting an influx of patients from Texas, after an order from Texas Gov. Greg Abbott suspending most abortions in that state during the coronavirus pandemic.

In a new digital ad campaign, the abortion rights group NARAL is accusing President Trump and his Republican allies of exploiting the coronavirus pandemic to restrict abortion access. The new six-figure digital ad campaign targets voters in several swing states.

Updated at 3:50 p.m. ET

In a win for abortion rights advocates, a federal appeals court says medication abortions can proceed in Texas.

As abortion providers were scrambling to schedule procedures in Texas during the coronavirus pandemic, a federal appeals court has effectively reinstated a ban on most abortions in Texas.

A federal judge in Oklahoma has issued a temporary order allowing medication abortions and time-sensitive surgical abortions to go forward in the state during the coronavirus pandemic.

An association representing thousands of hospitals across the country is pushing back after President Trump claimed that hospital administrators are "really thrilled to be where they are."

The American Hospital Association said hospital officials are worried about shortages of critical medical supplies, including medication for patients and personal protective equipment, or PPE, for health care workers.

West Virginia is the latest state to delay its primary because of the coronavirus pandemic. Gov. Jim Justice announced that the May 12 primary is being pushed back to June 9.

"I want this to be the biggest turnout of all time," Justice said while announcing the change via web stream. "Because all of us should treasure the opportunity and the privilege to vote, and I want us to have that opportunity, and by moving this it will give us a lot better chance to do so."

UPDATED 3:04 PM ET

As reproductive rights activists warn that some patients seeking abortions are being turned away, a federal court has ruled that an order suspending abortions in Texas during the coronavirus pandemic can stand - at least for now.

Joe Pinero's after-work routine has changed recently.

"I strip outside of my door, take basically all my clothes off and walk in naked and just get directly into a shower when I do come into the house," Pinero said.

But he doesn't think his neighbors in Hoboken, N.J., mind too much, because they know he works as an emergency room doctor.

"If anyone has seen me naked, I'm sorry. But it's probably gonna happen again," he said with a laugh.

State officials in Kentucky and Oklahoma are among a growing number of Republican officials who say abortion is a nonessential procedure that should be put on hold during the coronavirus pandemic.

A coalition of anti-abortion rights groups is asking federal health officials to urge abortion providers to shut down during the coronavirus outbreak.

As members of Congress continue to struggle to agree on terms for an emergency aid package aimed at addressing the financial consequences of the coronavirus pandemic, a coalition of national nonprofit groups is asking lawmakers to do more to help the nation's charities.

As a writer, Lily Burana already spends a lot of time working alone at home, about an hour outside New York City. And as an extrovert, Burana says she relies on her social network to balance out the lonely hours.

"It's really hard, because at the end of the day, I look forward to shutting my laptop and taking my daughter to a playground, or going shopping, or meeting a friend at a museum, or having a coffee," Burana said. "And all of those things have to be tabled for now, out of a sense of obligation to not turn myself into an accidental vector."

Missouri could soon become the first state in the nation without a clinic providing abortions, but Planned Parenthood officials say the last remaining one there has already all but ceased performing the procedure.

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

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