Mary Scott Hodgin

Mary Scott Hodgin

Health and Science Reporter



Mary Scott Hodgin is an award-winning journalist from Birmingham, AL. She covers health and science, as well as the Alabama prison system.

Hodgin grew up in Birmingham and attended the University of Alabama. Before joining public radio, she lived in Spain and previously worked as a camp counselor in rural Wyoming and Alaska. She has experience in documentary filmmaking and is fluent in Spanish.

When she's not reporting, Hodgin enjoys spending time outdoors, finding new music and experimenting in the kitchen.

Biden at 16th Street Baptist Church Commemoration: ‘Hate is on the Rise’

Sunday marked the 56th anniversary of the bombing of Birmingham’s 16th Street Baptist Church. Former Vice President Joe Biden spoke at the memorial observance.

Medicare Change a ‘Huge, Significant Thing’ for Alabama

Rural hospitals in Alabama are struggling to make ends meet. Now, experts say Medicare is throwing the state a lifeline.

Governor’s Study Group Meets on Prison Operations

Gov. Kay Ivey’s task force on criminal justice policy convened Wednesday in Montgomery to discuss the state’s troubled prison system.

UAB Using Whole Blood to Improve Trauma Care

For decades, blood banks have separated blood into different parts: cells, plasma and platelets. Experts say that has a lot of advantages, but sometimes, patients just need whole blood.

Hepatitis A Outbreak Spreads to Jefferson County

Health officials announced Tuesday the county is fighting an outbreak of Hepatitis A.

With Low-Impact Development, Cities Hope to Better Control Runoff

Many cities in Alabama now have ordinances in place to encourage low-impact development. The goal is to reduce the amount of runoff that pollutes and erodes area waterways and better prepare for extreme weather.

Development Fills the Cahaba River with Sediment

Increased construction around Birmingham has led to concerns about the amount of sediment in the Cahaba River.

How Prepared is UAB Hospital for a Mass Shooting?

UAB Hospital is Alabama’s busiest high-level trauma center. But how prepared is the hospital for tragedy on a larger scale?

UAB Study Shows Limiting Meal Times Can Lower Appetite

Research out this week shows the timing of your meals could help you eat less. The UAB-led study explored the benefits of a type of intermittent fasting.

Two Workers Found Dead After Trench Collapse in Hoover

Two workers were found dead Tuesday evening after a trench collapsed on them in a Hoover neighborhood. The discovery came after an hours-long rescue and recovery effort.

Biometric Technology Comes to Birmingham Airport

Air travelers flying out of Birmingham can now identify themselves with the touch of a finger or an eye scan. Officials at the Birmingham-Shuttlesworth International Airport on Thursday unveiled new biometric technology from the company CLEAR.

Energy Storage Research Center Opens in Birmingham

Energy officials from around the country gathered in Birmingham Tuesday to mark the opening of the Energy Storage Research Center. They say the facility has big implications for the future of renewable power.

Putting a Price Tag on a Fish Kill

Last month’s wastewater spill at a chicken plant in Hanceville resulted in the largest reported fish kill in years. Environmental groups and residents want to see hefty fines against those responsible for the incident, but how do officials come up with a dollar amount?

The Story Behind Parcak’s “Archaeology from Space”

UAB anthropology professor Sarah Parcak uses satellite images to find buried sites in Egypt and around the world. She takes readers on that journey of discovery in her new book, “Archaeology from Space: How the Future Shapes Our Past.”

“Harsh and Sad at the Same Time” – Residents React to Case of Marshae Jones

Marshae Jones was charged with manslaughter in the death of her fetus after being shot in the stomach during a fight. The case has drawn international attention, with people on both sides of the debate over whether a fetus should have the rights of personhood.

Training Better Robotic Surgeons in Virtual Reality

Surgery today can look a lot different than it did 20 years ago. In addition to scalpels and forceps, many surgeons need to know how to operate using a robot. But learning to use the device can be a challenge.

Report: Well-Being of Alabama Children Still Lags Nationwide

Alabama’s teen birth rate has decreased dramatically in the last decade. That’s according to a new report from the Annie E. Casey Foundation, which has ranked the overall well-being of kids across the US for 30 years.

CDC Director Visits Alabama to Discuss Ending HIV

The director of the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), Dr. Robert Redfield, visited Montgomery on Friday to discuss strategies to combat HIV.

Alabama’s Chemical Castration Law Draws Criticism

Certain convicted sex offenders in Alabama will soon have to undergo chemical castration if they want to be released on parole. That’s according to a bill signed into law this week by Gov. Kay Ivey.

Top Wheelchair Rugby Teams Battle it out in Birmingham

Four of the world’s top wheelchair rugby teams squared off recently in Birmingham. It was their last chance to compete in the U.S. ahead of the 2020 Paralympics in Tokyo.

Mt. Vernon Arsenal, Searcy Hospital Among Most Endangered Historic Places

The National Trust for Historic Preservation announced this week that Mt. Vernon Arsenal, which later became Searcy Hospital, is one of America’s 11 Most Endangered Historic Places for 2019.

$21 Million Study Will Research Health Disparities in the Rural South

People who live in the rural South are more likely to die sooner than people in other parts of the country. A new study funded by the National Institutes of Health tries to figure out why.

UAB Closing Residential Addiction Unit to Expand Other Services

UAB hospital recently announced it will close its residential addiction treatment unit, which has provided overnight care for patients with substance use disorder for more than 20 years. Some are criticizing the decision, but officials say the closure is part of a bigger plan.

Crime Wave Highlights Barriers Between Police and Hispanic Community

Recently there’s been a surge in crimes targeting the Hispanic community in and around Birmingham. Police want victims to feel comfortable reporting the incidents, but that means overcoming some roadblocks.

Jeffco Commission Approves UAB-Led Authority for Cooper Green

The Jefferson County Commission approved a resolution Thursday to allow UAB to manage operations at the county’s indigent care clinic.

Trash Talk: Why Doesn’t Birmingham Recycle More?

One way to reduce the amount of trash is to recycle more. That’s a challenge in the city of Birmingham.

SPLC Proposes ‘Collaborative Process’ to Address Prison Crisis

The Southern Poverty Law Center sent a letter Tuesday to Gov. Kay Ivey and state Department of Corrections Commissioner Jeff Dunn proposing its own plan to address the state’s prison crisis.

UAB Launches Program to Improve Treatment of Opioid Overdose

UAB’s Emergency Department is starting a new program to better treat patients with opioid use disorder. The initiative focuses on increasing the use of a drug called Suboxone.

DOJ Alleges Alabama Prisons Violate the Constitution

The Department of Justice released a report Wednesday alleging that violence and other dangerous conditions in the state’s male prisons violate the Eighth Amendment of the Constitution.

Jeffco Health Officials: Violence is a Public Health Issue

Violence is the newest strategic focus for the Jefferson County Department of Health. It was one of several topics discussed in Tuesday’s annual State of Health in Jefferson County address.

Officials Investigate Fish Kill Along Black Warrior River

State officials are looking into a fish kill that happened near Alabama Power’s Plant Gorgas in Walker County. Environmental advocates say they found at least 100 dead fish downstream of the plant.

Alabama is Offering Free Genetic Testing. Here’s Why.

Scientists in Alabama want to capture a statewide genetic footprint. Free testing, they say, can help residents detect their risk for disease and bolster future genomic research.