(Lisa Russell Films)

It’s a long way from the streets of Ventura to places like Kenya, and Indonesia where Lisa Russell produces films about global healthcare efforts.

The Emmy Award winning health advocate admits it was a very long, and unplanned path to her very unusual job, which combines her interests in healthcare and storytelling. Russell grew up in Ventura, and this week is returning to Ventura County for the screening of her latest film.

A huge vacant building owned by Ventura County could potentially be the future home of a community clinic.

The county owns a 14,000 square foot building on the 2000 block of Royal Avenue in Simi Valley. The county used the building for more than 40 years for a variety of county agencies ranging from healthcare to the agricultural commissioner’s office. But, last year, the county consolidated all of its operations in a building on Madera Road.

A proposed merger of two of the largest health care providers in Santa Barbara County is being dropped.

In 2013, Cottage Health and Sansum Clinic filed an application with the Federal Trade Commission to combine resources. Both organizations now say they are withdrawing the proposal, and will focus on the longer term, independent planning for their separate futures. They aren’t saying specifically why they decided to drop the plan.

(VA Photo)

Richard Valdez is a former Marine and Vietnam veteran who was wounded in the war, and has been living with its aftereffects for a half century.

A couple thousand people have more reason to “smile” after a visit to the South Coast over the weekend. Many low-income people received free dental work at the Ventura County Fairgrounds.

Concerns about potential impacts of Zika virus are prompting a community forum on the South Coast this week.

The Santa Barbara County Public Health Department, along with women from the non-profit Goleta based group Direct Relief International are co-sponsoring tomorrow night’s event in Santa Barbara. Zika virus is a mosquito borne disease which can also be transmitted by humans.

While most of the time there are no impacts on those infected by it, it can cause birth defects if a pregnant woman contracts it.

It’s a measure commonly used to assess our health.

But, a new study co-authored by a UC Santa Barbara researcher suggests that this commonly used indicator may actually be labeling people who are healthy as obese.