Sarah Ladd

Sarah Ladd

Sarah Ladd is a Louisville-based journalist from West Kentucky who's covered everything from crime to higher education. She spent nearly two years on the metro breaking news desk at The Courier Journal. In 2020, she started reporting on the COVID-19 pandemic and has covered health ever since. As the Kentucky Lantern's health reporter, she focuses on mental health, LGBTQ+ issues, children's welfare, COVID-19 and more.

Recalled fruit puree pouches may contain ‘elevated levels of lead’

By: - November 2, 2023

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration says people who recently consumed WanaBana apple cinnamon fruit puree pouches should seek a blood test from their primary care provider because the recalled product may contain “elevated levels of lead.”  The FDA is working to remove the pouches from stores, it said in late October. Meanwhile, it is […]

Kentucky’s ban on transgender medical care for minors headed to U.S. Supreme Court, ACLU says

By: - November 1, 2023

Kentucky’s chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union says it will ask the U.S. Supreme Court to weigh in on the 2023 law banning certain gender affirming medical care for transgender minors.  This comes more than a month after the Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled 2-1 to keep Kentucky’s ban on treatments like […]

Louisville opioid settlement board opens grant applications

By: - October 30, 2023

LOUISVILLE – The board tasked with spending Louisville’s opioid settlement money has asked organizations to apply for grants to help prevent addiction and offer long term recovery support.  The Louisville Opioid Distribution Settlement Advisory Board will give out $5.3 million in its second grant round a little more than a month after it was established. […]

UK Chandler Hospital reports five cases of treatment-resistant fungus, Candida auris

By: - October 24, 2023

The UK Chandler Hospital in Lexington says it has five patients with a fungus, Candida auris, that is resistant to treatment.  Candida auris can make people severely ill, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. It also “spreads easily” in health care settings like a hospital.  And “medications that are designed to kill the […]


A Kentucky COVID-19 reporter’s journey with COVID-19

By: - October 23, 2023

For more than three years, I’ve written about COVID-19. The people who caught it and those who kept it longer than they should have. The people who bought into misinformation. And, worst of all, those who died from it.   Finally, I tested positive myself.    Don’t get me wrong, I’ve had several COVID-19 scares over the […]

‘Flying blind:’ A Kentucky COVID-19 pandemic retrospective 

By: - October 18, 2023

On March 6, 2020, a Kentuckian in Lexington tested positive for the novel coronavirus, COVID-19, and Gov. Andy Beshear declared a state of emergency. The United States had been under a public health emergency for more than a month by then. Five days after Kentucky’s first confirmed case, the World Health Organization said COVID-19 was […]

Birth is ‘normal until it’s not:’ Freestanding birth centers debate continues in Kentucky

By: - October 16, 2023

Two Kentucky lawmakers who have championed freestanding birth centers said Monday that they have agreed to concessions in their latest proposal, but the head of the state’s hospital association and two OB-GYNs testified that the changes are not enough to protect patients.  Advocates for each side of the years-long debate spoke Monday before the Interim […]

Report: Flood insurance cost a barrier to Eastern Kentucky recovery

By: - October 16, 2023

The cost of flood insurance is a large recovery barrier for people living in Eastern Kentucky flood plains, says a report by the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland. Researcher Matt Klesta reported what locals have said: Flood insurance is too expensive for most residents. Also, floods have made affordable housing problems worse and driven locals […]

Kentucky’s largest city giving away free period products

By: - October 13, 2023

LOUISVILLE – Eighteen of Louisville’s health department and Metro Hall public-facing bathrooms just got period products dispensers thanks to an investment of around a $1,000 from the city’s Office of Women.  The free products are part of a pilot program that city leaders said Friday is a step toward health equity and also a worthwhile […]

Ryan Quarles contract, salary as KCTCS president confirmed

By: - October 12, 2023

The new president of Kentucky’s largest provider of postsecondary education will earn $380,000 annually, according to his contract, which the Lantern received Thursday through an open records request. Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles is a former state lawmaker who ran, unsuccessfully, as a Republican candidate for governor this year.  He was appointed president of the Kentucky […]

Lawmakers briefed on handling of sexual misconduct charges against juvenile justice staff

By: - October 12, 2023

Since 2015, there were six cases in which Kentucky Department of Juvenile Justice staff engaged in sexual misconduct or activity with a youth in the system, staff told the Legislative Oversight and Investigations Committee Thursday.  The misconduct could include “sexual harassment” or “inappropriate sexual banter,”  Kentucky Justice and Public Safety Cabinet Secretary Kerry Harvey told […]

South Louisville to get ‘The Birthing Place.’ Why it matters.

By: - October 11, 2023

LOUISVILLE – Kentucky’s most populous city is set to get new birthing options thanks to a $20 million investment from UofL Health. The hospital system plans to start demolition of a 21,000-square foot space in South Louisville’s Mary & Elizabeth Hospital in December. It then plans to open The Birthing Place in the spring of […]