Lauren M. Whaley

Lauren M. Whaley

Center for Health Reporting

Lauren M. Whaley is a photographer, radio producer and print reporter specializing in topics related to mental illness, reproductive health care and health disparities. She is also a childbirth photographer.

This year, she is working on a series about how low-income parents access care for perinatal mental illnesses. The project is funded by the Rosalynn Carter Fellowships for Mental Health Journalism.

Whaley was a 2016-17 Knight Science Journalism Fellow at the Massachusetts Institute for Technology.

Her work has been recognized by the Association of Health Care Journalists, the Scripps Howard Foundation and the Public Radio Exchange (PRX) STEM story project. She has contributed radio, video, photography and written stories to KQED Public Radio, Southern California Public Radio, the San Jose Mercury News, the New York Times and other media outlets. For six years, I worked as the Center for Health Reporting's multimedia journalist, based in Los Angeles. She is a past president of the national organization Journalism and Women Symposium (JAWS) and spent her early 20s leading canoe expeditions for young women, including a solo-led 45-trip in the Canadian Arctic. 

Mental Breakdown

What mental illness looks like

I assembled my makeshift photo studio in a windowless office just big enough for a desk and two chairs. Wax paper covered the Home Depot work lights. Electrical tape held up the white sheet I had borrowed from my Modesto hotel room. My subjects walked in one at a time and sat in the chair in front of the sheet, facing my camera and tripod.
Scheduling baby's birthday

U.S. delivers too many preemies. California does too

If California were a country, it would tie with Fiji for the percentage of babies born too early. In 2010, nearly 10 babies out of every 100 were born before 37 weeks of gestation.

Scheduling baby's birthday

Questions and answers about early elective childbirth

We’ve reported extensively on how hospitals across the state and country are reducing early elective deliveries of babies.

Scheduling baby's birthday

The Myth of the Big Baby

My friend had been pushing for four hours.

“You have a size nine baby coming out of a size seven pelvis,” her doctor said.

Scheduling baby's birthday

KPCC: Childbirth by appointment

Corrie Carroll’s husband travels for work a lot. So, when it came time to give birth to their daughter, the couple made an appointment. Carroll said the experience was perfect. “He arrived home from Europe on a Wednesday night and we drove to the hospital at 6 a.m. on Thursday morning,” said the mother of three, who lives in Pasadena. “I checked in. I put my hospital gown on. They gave me Pitocin. About an hour later, they gave me an epidural and eight hours later I had a baby.”

Baby Steps: Hospitals Reducing Early Elective Births. Slowly.

This is a corrected version of a blog that was published on January 25, 2012.

Forced Back on Dialysis

To Know Sheryl Glatt and Kidney Disease

I didn’t know Sheryl when she wasn’t sick. I didn’t know her as a preschool teacher, a mother, a churchgoer or dialysis support group leader. Every time I saw her, she was in a hospital bed, tethered to a dialysis machine or in a wheelchair en route to a doctor’s appointment.
Forced Back on Dialysis

Woman featured in kidney story dies

Sheryl Glatt, a kidney disease patient whose moving story was featured in a Ventura County Star special series over the summer, died on Dec. 18 after doctors tried to prevent her second amputation in five months. Glatt, 51, of Simi Valley had endured a debilitating dialysis stint as she sought a kidney transplant that could statistically extend her life expectancy by nearly two decades.

Five Photographs from 2011

From salad safety to surgeries, from 

Clean Greens

Photography Gallery: Food Safety Five Years After the Salinas Valley E. Coli Outbreak

Multimedia reporter Lauren M. Whaley traveled to Salinas Valley, Calif. to capture some of the efforts valley growers and companies have put in place since the 2006 E. Coli outbreak. In addition to fields of lettuce, she photographed an Earthbound Farm spinach processing facility and a warehouse operated by New Leaf Food Safety Solutions, which produces a leafy green wash called T-128 that stops the spread of contamination from one leaf to another.
Home alone

Mary Sanchez: I Only Have Two Hands

Mary Sanchez, 73, is her husband's primary caregiver. Her husband, Armando Sanchez, suffered a stroke 11 years ago and was diagnosed with dementia two years after that. She tries to keep him healthy.

Home alone

Nina Nolcox: A Model That Works

Nina Nolcox opened the doors to Graceful Senescence Adult Day Health Care Center in 2006 in South Los Angeles. The CEO used to work as a registered nurse in skilled nursing facilities and hospitals.

Home alone

Opinions, observations and feelings about the prospective closure of up to 300 Adult Day Health Care Centers across the state

“This has never been done before in any state in the United States. We are the only state that has completely shut down an entire adult day health care community for Medicaid patients.

Fresno battles fat

Obesity Education: One Woman's Lessons

Last month, new data came out ranking California as the 12th skinniest state in the union. But, you wouldn't know it living in the San Joaquin Valley, where one in three people is obese and therefore at risk for a slew of diseases, including diabetes, heart attack and early death.
Fresno battles fat

Valley Edition: Obesity Education in the San Joaquin Valley

Following reporter Lauren Whaley's story on obesity education in Fresno, Valley Public Radio hosts an hour-long show on obesity in the San Joaquin Valley. Juanita Stevenson talks with Carrie Swidecki, an obesity advocate and Bakersfield teacher about her personal struggle with this issue.
Fresno battles fat

Valley Public Radio: Fresno teen finds hope in diagnosis

When Victor Ycong was diagnosed with diabetes, he thought his life was over. At 6-foot-1 and 228 pounds, the 15-year-old Fresno teenager was already at risk for a slew of diseases associated with being obese. But, he says, his diabetes diagnosis saved him. Now, he exercises and eats better. Listen to the first of two stories about childhood obesity in Fresno County, where 36 percent of adolescents, ages 12 to 17, are overweight or obese. Statewide, that number is about 29 percent.
Fresno battles fat

Experts discuss childhood obesity

In conjunction with our report on childhood obesity in Fresno County, the Center helped organize an on-air discussion about childhood obesity in the San Joaquin Valley. Following Lauren Whaley’s report, Quality of Life show host Joe Moore spoke with experts Genoveva Islas-Hooker and Sara Bosse about how and why an increasing number of young people in the Valley are facing obesity.
Wide differences

KQED features hospital infections radio story

Multimedia Reporter Lauren M. Whaley joined Senior Writer Deborah Schoch to produce a story about a hospital in the Inland Empire making great strides in its fight against central line infections. Listen to the radio story that aired on KQED's Health Dialogues.
Wide differences

KQED: Reduced Infection Rates at Riverside Medical Center

Sitting by the hearth

KPCC: SoCal, don't light that fire

Multimedia reporter Lauren M. Whaley's story on wood smoke pollution from fireplaces aired on KPCC's The Madeleine Brand Show on Monday. The South Coast Air Quality Management District rolled out a voluntary no-burn program this season for the Southland, asking fireplace owners not to light wood fires on days when air pollution is already high. Dare we say, the issue is heated.
Medicare testing ground

KQED: Bidding for Medicare Contracts

Riverside County

Medi-Cal Mess

Riverside County's deficient handling of health care for the poor is unacceptable. County supervisors should be asking tough questions about why the county cannot meet federal standards for handling Medi-Cal claims promptly, and demanding solutions that will improve the county's performance.
Medicare testing ground

Medicare announces winning suppliers

Signaling a massive effort to cut Medicare costs, Medicare officials on Wednesday issued the names of nearly 70 companies selected to provide medical equipment throughout the Inland Empire.

Medicare testing ground

Quest for low prices in Medicare alarms suppliers

YUCCA VALLEY - In the new age of Medicare, Esta Willman would seem like a winner.

The small medical supply firm she co-owns with her husband just won two prized contracts to provide oxygen and power wheelchairs to Inland Empire seniors.


© 2019 Center for Health Reporting