Rebecca Plevin

Reporter

Rebecca Plevin was a reporter for Valley Public Radio from 2013-2014. Before joining the station, she was the community health reporter for Vida en el Valle, the McClatchy Company's bilingual newspaper in California's San Joaquin Valley. She earned the George F. Gruner Award for Meritorious Public Service in Journalism and the McClatchy President's Award for her work at Vida, as well as honors from the National Association of Hispanic Publications and the California Newspaper Publishers Association. Plevin grew up in the Washington, D.C. area and is a graduate of Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism. She is also a fluent Spanish speaker, a certified yoga teacher, and an avid rock-climber.

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Shots - Health News
12:32 am
Mon May 13, 2013

Cases Of Mysterious Valley Fever Rise In American Southwest

Emily Gorospe, 8, loves to dance and usually can't sit still, so her parents started to worry when she became very tired two years ago. Emily was eventually diagnosed with valley fever, a fungal disease that 150,000 people contract each year.
Daniel Casarez/Vida en el Valle/Reporting on Health Collaborative

Originally published on Tue September 24, 2013 7:11 am

When she was just 6, Emily Gorospe became very tired and sick. The spunky girl, now 8, developed a fever that wouldn't go away, and red blotches appeared across her body.

"She's got so much energy usually," says Emily's mother, Valerie Gorospe. "Just walking from one part of the house ... she was drained." The little girl was also very pale. "She just didn't look like herself," Valerie recalls.

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Valley Edition
12:02 pm
Tue May 7, 2013

On Valley Edition: Restorative Justice; Valley Fever; Taxes; Nurses; Bakersfield Jazz Festival

Credit http://smoothjazzbuzz.wordpress.com/2013/04/14/27th-bakersfield-jazz-festival/

This week on Valley Edition we explore the region through reports and interviews on valley fever, restorative justice in schools, health care, taxes and a Jazz festival in the area.

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Health
9:39 am
Tue May 7, 2013

State Raises Questions About Moving Inmates At Risk of Valley Fever

Under the plan proposed by the federal receiver in charge of health care in California's prisons, an estimated 50 percent of inmates at Avenal and Pleasant Valley state prisons would be moved because they are at high risk of contracting valley fever.
Credit CA Dept of Corrections

In a motion filed in U.S. District Court yesterday, the state Attorney General raised questions about the federal order to exclude inmates especially vulnerable to valley fever from two Central Valley prisons.

“The receiver is calling for the transferring, he described it last week as ‘effective immediately,’ of over 3,000 inmates from those two prisons,” says Jeffrey Callison, spokesman for the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation. “That’s a huge, complex undertaking. Could it happen? Of course it could happen, but it would take a long time to implement.”

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Health
6:44 pm
Tue April 30, 2013

Prison Health Advocates Call For More Steps to Stop Valley Fever Outbreak

On Monday afternoon, the federal receiver in charge of health care in California’s prisons ordered the state prison to remove inmates from two Central Valley prisons who are especially at risk of contracting valley fever.  A day later, the state and experts are digesting that directive. Valley Public Radio's Rebecca Plevin reports, as part of the Reporting on Health Collaborative’s investigation into the disease.

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Valley Edition
1:03 pm
Tue April 30, 2013

On Valley Edition: Water; Fracking; Valley Fever; Restorative Justice; Honey Festival

This week on Valley Edition we explore issues that may impact the region as a whole. Our reporting team tackles regional issues that include advocacy for potable water in rural communities, hydraulic fracking and restorative justice in Valley schools. As well as a festival celebrating honey in the region.

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Environment
9:19 am
Tue April 30, 2013

Where Might Funding For Safe Drinking Water Flow From?

Sandra Garcia, left, of Poplar, can't drink her water because it's contaminated by nitrates.
Credit Rebecca Plevin / Valley Public Radio

For the past 35 years, Sandra Garcia has picked grapes, plums and peppers on San Joaquin Valley farms. But when she returns to her home in the small, Tulare County community of Poplar, she’s reminded of agriculture’s impact on her drinking water.

She can’t drink it because it contains unhealthy levels of nitrates. And she can’t cook with it, because boiling water can concentrate the nitrate level. It’s a serious health issue for infants and pregnant women.

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Environment
9:53 am
Wed April 24, 2013

Valley Cities Top National Lists For Air Pollution

Credit Joe Moore / Valley Public Radio

If you’re expecting clean air in the San Joaquin Valley, don’t hold your breath.

The American Lung Association released this week its annual State of the Air report. It shows that Valley cities continue to top the lists for the most polluted areas in the nation for ozone, short-term particle pollution, and annual particle pollution.

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Valley Edition
12:35 pm
Tue April 23, 2013

On Valley Edition: Medical Interpreters; Clinics; Makers Faire; High-Speed Rail

Credit Credit California High Speed Rail Authority / File Photo

This week on Valley Edition we take a look across the region at health issues, innovation, the future of high-speed rail in California and more.

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Health
9:30 am
Tue April 23, 2013

CDC To Hold Valley Fever Symposium in Bakersfield, McCarthy Says

Congressman Kevin McCarthy has enlisted the help of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to raise awareness of valley fever, and to encourage the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to waive a fee needed to put a valley fever skin test on the market.
Credit Shelby Mack / The Bakersfield Californian

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will visit the San Joaquin Valley later this year to train public health professionals and the public in recognizing and defending against valley fever, Congressman Kevin McCarthy said Monday after an in-depth meeting with the agency and its director.

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Health
9:07 am
Tue April 23, 2013

Valley's Need For Medical Interpreters Could Increase With Health Law

Experts predict there will be an even greater demand for medical interpreters when the Affordable Care Act is implemented in 2014. (file photo)
Credit Andrew Nixon / Capital Public Radio

When Mailu Lor translates for a Hmong patient, she can’t just repeat the doctor’s orders, word for word. That’s because the Hmong language often doesn’t contain advanced medical terminology, or names for diseases, like diabetes.

“Hmong language is a very difficult language,” Lor said. “We don’t have any dictionary for medical terminology.”

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Agriculture
5:55 pm
Wed April 17, 2013

USDA to Give Hispanic and Female Farmers More Time to File Discrimination Claims

Decades of discriminatory practices by the U.S. Department of Agriculture against women and Hispanic farmers are playing out in a $1.3 billion claims process. FM89’s Rebecca Plevin reports on a new deadline for those who allege discrimination.

For around 20 years, critics say the USDA’s farm loan program denied applicants because of their gender or race, and gave white male farmers preferential treatment in their dealings with the agency.

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Community
5:44 pm
Wed April 17, 2013

Fresno Runner Recounts Experience at Boston Marathon

Brad Castillo, right, was less than half a mile from the Boston Marathon finish line when the bombs exploded. He's pictured with his brother-in-law and fellow runner, Phillip Gonzalez.
Brad Castillo

For 17 years, Fresno resident Brad Castillo had strived to qualify for the Boston Marathon.

On Monday, he was less than half a mile away from the finish line – or, at his pace, about four minutes away from realizing his dream – when the mass of runners stopped. At that point, Castillo didn’t know there had been two explosions at the finish line.

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Valley Edition
12:04 pm
Tue April 16, 2013

On Valley Edition: Clinic Helps Homeless; CA Ag-gag Bill; Child Abuse Prevention; Scavenger Hunt

The Great Historic Fresno Scavenger Hunt, hosted by the Humanics Program at Fresno State, will be held May 11.
Credit The Great Historic Fresno Scavenger Hunt

This week on Valley Edition we step into the doors of a Merced health clinic that serves the homeless. The City of Merced was hit hard by the economic crash and foreclosure crisis in the past decade. In an already poor and medically under-served region, the recession created a new group of homeless people who have very limited access to medical care. But one determined doctor, aided by Golden Valley Health Centers staff and student volunteers from UC Merced, is striving to ensure these people don’t fall through the cracks.

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Health
9:02 am
Tue April 16, 2013

Mobile Health Clinic Provides Care to Merced's Homeless

Dr. Salvador Sandoval, left, gives Nick Arellano a cortisone shot.
Rebecca Plevin Valley Public Radio

Below a Highway 99 overpass, and sandwiched between the D Street homeless shelter and the railroad tracks, is an unlikely beacon of hope for Merced residents low on luck. It’s an RV that houses Golden Valley Health Center’s mobile health clinic for the homeless.

Nick Arellano, 55, has come to the mobile unit to see Dr. Salvador Sandoval, the homeless clinic’s doctor. Arellano has long hair and blue eyes that shine from his weathered face.

“How are you doing?” Sandoval asks.

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Environment
1:18 pm
Tue April 2, 2013

The Merced River Plan and the Future of Yosemite National Park

Credit Joe Moore / Valley Public Radio

Beneath the shadows of Half Dome and El Capitan, in the heart of Yosemite Valley, lies the Merced River. It’s been known as a Wild and Scenic River since 1987. It’s a federal designation that aims to preserve river ecosystems and values. But after a major flood damaged much of the park’s infrastructure in 1997, environmental groups and park management clashed over plans for how best to restore the park in compliance with the law. Now, after 15 years marked by lawsuits and studies, a new management plan for the Merced River has been released.

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Valley Edition
12:03 pm
Tue April 2, 2013

On Valley Edition: Strawberries & Education; Gardens & Baseball; Age-Old Fresno/Bakersfield Rivalry

The rivalry between Fresno and Bakersfield dates back to as far as most can remember. On Valley Edition we discuss how the two communities can work together in the future with a more regional approach
Credit Joe Moore / Valley Public Radio

This week on Valley Edition we  take the listener to one of the many strawberry stands that dot the San Joaquin Valley’s rural roads. But how often do these vine-ripened strawberries reach school menus? FM 89’s Rebecca Plevin explores the first partnership ever to exist between Fresno Unified School District and a Reedley farmer to bring local berries to cafeterias.

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Agriculture
9:55 am
Tue April 2, 2013

Reedley Farmer Goes 'Farm to School' With Strawberries

Pao Saephan is the first small farmer to sell his produce directly to Fresno Unified School District.
Rebecca Plevin Valley Public Radio

Pao Saephan crouches down in his sun-drenched field. He cups a red jewel in his hand.

In a few more days, his strawberries will be fully ripe. He’ll pick them once they are garnet-colored from stem to tip.

“We want all the strawberries, to be full ripe, full flavor, with 100 percent sugar in them,” says Saephan.

In the past, he would sell the fresh berries at his roadside stand - called Sam’s Strawberry Patch. It’s located at the intersection of Manning Avenue and I Street in Reedley.

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Just One Breath
12:48 pm
Thu March 28, 2013

CDC Study: Valley Fever Cases Increasing Dramatically

Dust storms can carry millions of spores from the fungus that causes valley fever.
Credit Craig Kohlruss / The Fresno Bee

Cases of valley fever are climbing at stunning rates nationwide, and especially in California and Arizona, according to a new study released today by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The agency launched its analysis following the publication of the Reporting on Health Collaborative’s ‘Just One Breath’ series on valley fever. Valley Public Radio is a member of the partnership.

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Community
3:37 pm
Tue March 26, 2013

Young Couple Calls For 'No More Slumlords'

Sergio and Ashley Cortes are starting a multimedia organization called 'No More Slumlords.'
Rebecca Plevin Valley Public Radio

Sergio and Ashley Cortes knock on a door in a run-down apartment building near downtown Fresno.

Sergio Cortes greets the young woman that cautiously cracks open the door. Ashley Cortes stands behind her husband, clasping a clipboard, ready to take notes.

“We’re basically doing canvassing of apartment complexes owned by JD Homes, and we want to talk to the tenants to see if they have any problems with JD Homes, like any stuff that’s not being fixed, anything that’s broken,” Sergio Cortes says.

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Valley Edition
12:53 pm
Tue March 26, 2013

On Valley Edition: Bakersfield, Centennial Corridor Project; Slumlords, Fresno's Lowell Community

Victor and Mary Jones moved into the Westpark community four years ago. They love the neighborhood and are sad they will be forced to move.
Credit Ezra Romero / Vally Public Radio

This week on Valley Edition we take a ride to into the South Valley where a battle is heating up over a   freeway connector project intended to connect Highway 58 from Tehachapi and beyond to Interstate 5. The major issue, the Centennial Corridor Project will tear out 300 homes in a well-established neighborhood just west of Highway 99 in Bakersfield.

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