Health related stories.

Katie Basile / KYUK

A woman was found dead after hours in the VFW sauna.

Maria Bell, age 31, of Chevak was unresponsive when she was discovered in the sauna of the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) building in Bethel. She was taken to the Emergency Room and pronounced dead.

Alaska State Troopers

A man from Alakanuk was found dead about 50 yards from his house after getting his snowmachine stuck in a deep snowbank. 

The Yukon Kuskokwim Ayagnirvik Healing Center provides substance abuse treatment for alcohol and opioid addiction in Bethel, Alaska.
Dean Swope / KYUK

Governor Bill Walker has declared Alaska’s opioid epidemic a state disaster and ordered state and federal money for overdose medication.

Alaska State Legislature

State Representative Tammie Wilson (R) of North Pole will travel to Bethel this weekend to hold a community forum on the status of the Office of Children's Services in Alaska. Wilson has called for a grand jury investigation into how the agency is performing, along with its entire parent agency, the Department of Health and Social Services. The meeting will take place from noon to 4 p.m. on Saturday, February 11  at the Bethel Legislative Information Office. KYUK’s Adrian Wagner spoke with Wilson to find out more.

YKHC To Ban Tobacco In February 2018

Feb 6, 2017

The Yukon Kuskokwim Health Corporation has pledged to become tobacco-free next year. This means smoking, dipping, and chewing will not be allowed in any YKHC rented or owned buildings, both in Bethel and the villages. 

Bethel Search and Rescue President Mike Riley and Vice President Fritz Charles address BSAR members at a regular meeting on February 2, 2017.
Anna Rose MacArthur / KYUK

It’s the first winter in Bethel since a liquor store opened after almost 40 years of illegal sales. Alcohol is easier than ever to get, and Bethel Search and Rescue says the number of calls they receive, almost all alcohol-related, has spiked. KYUK reports that volunteers are getting worn out, resources are depleting, and the organization is asking the community for help.

Film Academy Students / Lower Kuskokwim School District

Over the past decade in the Yukon Kuskokwim Delta, there were 982 reported dogs bites. More than half the victims were children under 10 years old. Many of the dogs were strays, and the outcome of some of these bites was death for the dogs and, in the worst cases, the humans. The Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium sees this situation as a public health issue.

Bethel Police Department

Within a week and a half, two people in Bethel are dead from what the police are reporting as possible self-inflicted gunshot wounds with no suspected foul play. That language usually translates to suicide.

Adrian Wagner / KYUK

After a water pipe freeze-up that left the village of Alakanuk without water or sewer service for over two weeks, officials are still trying to understand how this happened, and how to prevent it in the future.  

Dean Swope / KYUK

When the Yukon Kuskokwim Health Corporation discovered partially sterilized dental instruments in its clinic last September, it offered free blood tests to all the patients who could have made contact with the tools. Now the hospital is asking those patients to return for a second blood test, to see if any of those partially sterilized instruments could have transmitted an infectious disease.

There is a reason why it takes two blood tests.