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.

Their family home is flood-prone. Flood insurance is too expensive.

By: - January 12, 2023

JACKSON — Last time she checked, flood insurance would cost Carolyn Combs and husband Lou about $1,100 per month. That was before the 2021 and 2022 floods swept through her family’s home in Jackson, destroying everything inside. “I couldn’t imagine what it is now,” Combs told the Kentucky Lantern in mid-December. “But I already work […]

Months after flooding, many still lack basic household supplies, building materials

By: - January 12, 2023

JACKSON —About five months after deadly flooding and heavy rains displaced thousands of Eastern Kentuckians and killed at least 44, many still need help to replace basic household supplies.  The plea from many in Breathitt County going into hard winter is, they told the Kentucky Lantern: Don’t forget about us. And: there are still many […]

Months after Eastern Kentucky floods, survivors weigh the future

By: - January 11, 2023

JACKSON — When the 2021 Eastern Kentucky floods came, Nancy Herald’s basement filled to the rafters.  She lost roughly 50 years of cherished Christmas decorations stored along the concrete wall, along with the washer, dryer and refrigerator.  Because of that experience, the family thought they’d be ready when the 2022 floods came more than a […]

VOA Mid States CEO Jennifer Hancock

$1.3 million in donations will bring expansion, study of substance use recovery program

By: - January 6, 2023

FRANKFORT –Volunteers of America Mid-States on Friday announced an expansion of its substance abuse recovery program and a long term study to look at its effects and success thanks to $1.3 million in donations.  The five-year study is being called Project Strong. Through it, researchers will follow graduates of the Freedom House program for five […]

Kentucky Youth Advocates outlines 2023 goals to help children and families

By: - January 3, 2023

On the first day of the regular legislative session, Kentucky Youth Advocates outlined priorities to achieve its 2023 goal of making the state “the best place in America to be young.”  Kentucky ranks high for adverse childhood experiences, or ACEs, which are traumas or stressors in a person’s life before their 18th birthday. They can […]

Rotunda rally supports constitutional amendment legalizing cannabis

By: - January 3, 2023

Saying that legalization without decriminalization is “simply not an option,” state Rep. Nima Kulkarni on Tuesday introduced a constitutional amendment to ask Kentucky voters to weigh in on the cannabis debate. In addition to the amendent, which would legalize personal possession and use of marijuana in Kentucky, the Louisville Democrat also introduced legislation to codify […]

Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky Fall 2022 Vaccines Poll

New poll shows many Kentuckians believe COVID-19 is over

By: - December 13, 2022

Most Kentuckians will celebrate the holiday season regardless of COVID-19 levels, according to a new poll funded by the Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky.  Many also believe the pandemic is now over. These insights come from researchers with the University of Cincinnati’s Institute for Policy Research, who interviewed 855 Kentucky adults by telephone for the Vaccines […]

Props for therapy of patients with OCD.

OCD in Kentucky is a serious condition but remains misunderstood

By: - December 13, 2022

This story discusses suicide and self harm. If you or someone you know is contemplating suicide, please call or text the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 988.  The signs that Alexa Quinter had obsessive compulsive disorder even as a child were there, but she wasn’t diagnosed until well into her 20s.  After witnessing an attempted […]


Awaiting Kentucky Supreme Court’s abortion ruling with ‘anxiousness’ and uncertainty

By: - December 7, 2022

A Kentuckian seeking an abortion now must travel to another state for it, with Illinois being the nearest where the procedure is accessible with few or no restrictions.  Virginia has some access as well, though less than Illinois.  This is true despite the defeat of the anti-abortion Amendment 2, which would have specified there’s no […]

Flu picking up in Kentucky after mild seasons during COVID-19

By: - December 7, 2022

More cases of flu are popping up in Kentucky after masking during the pandemic kept the last few seasons relatively mild.  The Lexington-Fayette County Health Department posted on social media Wednesday that “flu is hitting hard in Lexington” with more cases in the first two months of the season than in the last three years.  […]

Laura Browning, a Kentucky doula and midwife student.

Too many pregnant Kentuckians and their babies lack access to care. Midwives say they could help.

By: - December 6, 2022

During three of her four pregnancies, Laura Browning drove three hours round-trip past hospitals to get prenatal care from midwives in Lexington, the only place that offered what she needed.  She even made the trip while in labor with her first baby, feeling that “the care that I was receiving” from the midwives “was worth […]


Introducing Kentucky Lantern’s health reporter

By: - December 6, 2022

Every time I write a Kentucky health story, I’m reminded of when I was 13 and my “GrandG” taught me to crochet. It took weeks for my fingers to find their way and steadily stitch together yarn that took the shapes of scarves, blankets, potholders.  Often, because I was new at it, my needle slipped […]