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In the latest issue of The Appalachian Voice, we examine some of the environmental and social factors that threaten the health of Appalachian residents. We also celebrate the wildflowers of late summer, and discuss a burgeoning movement to sustainably farm and harvest medicinal herbs.

Read the full issue online


lung with progressive massive fibrosis

Severe Black Lung Disease Makes A Deadly Resurgence

Diagnoses of the most severe form of black lung disease, known as progressive massive fibrosis, are on the rise in Appalachia. The causes of this deadly trend aren’t entirely clear, though it may be linked to the silica rock dust associated with thinner layers of coal.

women harvest black cohosh


Cultivating Forest Medicinals, Creating Healthy Economy

Appalachia’s forest are home to a stunning array of medicinal plants. A movement called forest farming is emerging to grow these plants in private forestland to decrease strains on plant populations and strengthen the market for the region’s botanicals.


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Wildflower Wonders

Wildflowers are one of Appalachia’s most vibrant symbols of summer. As the season’s end nears, we explore a few beautiful, unique flowers that blossom in late summer along mountain trails, forests and riverbeds.

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Communities Aim to Solve the Opioid Epidemic

Opioid abuse is on the rise, and Appalachia has been hit particularly hard. In response, some local governments and treatment centers are trying new treatment methods and working to eliminate the stigma associated with addiction.