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The Conversation: Investigating COVID Cases in Incarceration Facilities

NASA/Bill Ingalls

COVID-19 cases behind bars; Big Island doctor reflects as physician-assisted-dying bill advances in Hawai'i Senate; Reality Check: State budget shortfall smaller than expected; Alzheimer's virtual conference tomorrow; Punahou grad on the latest Mars mission

COVID-19 cases behind bars

Oʻahu Community Correctional Center
Credit Ku'uwehi Hiraishi / Hawaii Public Radio
Oʻahu Community Correctional Center

The Oversight Commission on Hawai?i’s Correctional Systems is requesting an analysis of inmate deaths at state jails and prisons. Just this week, Public Safety reported that another death behind bars was reclassified as COVID-related. HPR reporter Ku'uwehi Hiraishi brought us the story.

LISTEN: HPR reporter Ku'uwehi Hiraishi

Big Island doctor reflects as physician-assisted-dying bill advances in Hawai'i Senate

The Senate bill SB839 would tweak the Our Care, Our Choice Act to make physician assisted dying more accessible to patients. Ahead of the bill's public hearing tomorrow, our host Catherine Cruz checked in with Dr. Charlotte Charfen about her work with Life & Death Wellness, a non-profit community resource.

LISTEN: Dr. Charlotte Charfen

Reality Check: State budget shortfall smaller than expected

Despite the harrowing fiscal year, the state government is walking back its initial shortfall projects. But some residents could still faces tax hikes as state lawmakers look to restore government programs and consider how to pay down the state's $700 million federal loan for unemployment benefits.  Read senior reporter Kevin Dayton's full story at civilbeat.org.

LISTEN: Reality Check, Feb. 24th, 2021

Alzheimer's virtual conference tomorrow

The Alzheimer's Association estimates that there are over 66,000 caregivers for Alzheimer's disease sufferers in Hawaii. To keep the community up to date on best caregiving practices, the Alzheimer's Foundation of America is hosting a free virtual educational workshop tomorrow, February 25th, for Hawaii residents. The Conversation's Russell Subiono caught up with one of the scheduled speakers, Gary Powell of The Caregiver Foundation.

LISTEN: Gary Powell

Punahou grad on the latest Mars mission

Credit NASA/JPL-Caltech
The first image of Mars from NASA’s Perseverance rover.

NASA released the first images transmitted by the rover Perseverance this week after its successful landing on Mars. As a NASA guidance and control engineer, Punahou grad Christopher Pong had a front row seat on the historical day. He spoke with The Conversation's Jason Ubay about his role in the mission.

Check out NASA's resources for kids who want to learn more about careers in space exploration at Next Gen Stem.

LISTEN: Christopher Pong

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Stay Connected
Catherine Cruz is the host of The Conversation. Originally from Guam, she spent more than 30 years at KITV, covering beats from government to education. Contact her at ccruz@hawaiipublicradio.org.
Russell Subiono is the executive producer of The Conversation. Born in Honolulu and raised on Hawaiʻi Island, he’s spent the last decade working in local film, television and radio. Contact him at talkback@hawaiipublicradio.org.
Jason Ubay is the managing editor at Hawaiʻi Public Radio. Send your story ideas to him at jubay@hawaiipublicradio.org.
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