Rachel Levine

Courtesy of CemSites

On today's program: Medical marijuana will soon be used to treat anxiety, but not as a first resort; a local activist pushes shopping local during Amazon Prime Day; WESA explores the impact of crime and incarceration on Homewood; how a Perryopolis startup is modernizing cemetery management and commerce; and a new documentary weighs in on how humans interact with nature. 

Emma Lee / WHYY

Department of Health Secretary Dr. Rachel Levine led discussion with the medical marijuana advisory board around adding anxiety and Tourette Syndrome to the list of conditions to be treated with medical cannabis. 

Seth Weing / AP

Pennsylvania's medical marijuana program has reached a milestone: more than 100,000 patients have been certified in the commonwealth since medical marijuana was legalized in 2016. Certification means the patient has registered for the medical marijuana program, has had physician approval for use and they've obtained their medical marijuana card. 

Screengrab / CDC

Suicide rates have increased in nearly every state from 1999 to 2016, according to a study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released Thursday. Since 2016, there have been 45,000 suicides nationwide.

missjanetb / Flickr

The rate of maternal deaths has risen in the U.S. since 2000. Between 2014 and 2016, 51 Pennsylvania women died from complications due to pregnancy, and according to Gov. Tom Wolf, the current rate in Pennsylvania has doubled since 1994. 

Amy Sisk / StateImpact Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania will use the $118 million it received in a settlement with Volkswagen to fund grants and rebates for cleaner vehicles and engines.

The money comes to the state after the German automaker programmed diesel vehicles to cheat emissions tests and reached a $14.7-billion settlement with the federal government. Most is going toward buying back vehicles and compensating owners, but some is going into a trust that divvies up the money to states.

In Pennsylvania, funds will go toward buying new engines or retrofitting old ones.

State Medical Marijuana Program Expands To Include Dry Leaf

Apr 16, 2018
Steven Senne / AP

Patients in Pennsylvania's medical marijuana programshould be able to obtain the drug in dry leaf or flower form for vaporization by sometime this summer, the Wolf administration announced Monday.

Jennifer Peltz / AP

Pennsylvanians have started receiving identification cards to get medication through the commonwealth's new medical marijuana program.

Tony Talbot / AP

One of the root causes of opioid addiction is over-prescription of addictive drugs.

A major reason it occurs is the practice of doctor shopping — when people visit five or more prescribers in hopes of getting drugs. 

eggrole / Flickr

Physicians in Pennsylvania can now register to participate in the state’s forthcoming medical marijuana program.

Torkbak Hopper / flickr

In April, Governor Tom Wolf signed two executive orders that expanded non-discrimination protections to all state workers and state contractors based on their sexual identity, gender identity and gender expression. While this marks a progressive step forward for employees of the state, transgender Pennsylvanians still face challenges when it comes to health care access, legal assistance and workplace discrimination. Representative Dan Frankel (D-23) has introduced legislation to combat these problems, and Dr. Rachel Levine, Pennsylvania Physician General is a major advocate.