Blake Farmer | Nashville Public Radio

Blake Farmer

Senior Health Care Reporter

Blake Farmer is Nashville Public Radio's senior health care reporter. In a partnership with Kaiser Health News and NPR, Blake covers health in Tennessee and the health care industry in the Nashville area for local and national audiences.

Blake has worked at WPLN throughout his career, most recently serving as news director and primary editor for the newsroom. Previously, his reporting focused on education and the military. He's also enjoyed producing stories about midnight frog gigging and churches holding gun raffles. 

Growing up in East Nashville, Blake attended Lipscomb Academy. He went to college in Texas at Abilene Christian University where he cut his teeth in radio at KACU-FM. Before joining WPLN full time in 2007, Blake also wrote for the Nashville City Paper and filed international stories for World Christian Broadcasting.

An active member and past-president of the Society of Professional Journalists Middle Tennessee Chapter, Blake has also won numerous regional and national awards from the Associated Press, RTDNA and PRNDI. In 2017, his alma mater honored him with the Gutenberg Award for achievements of journalism graduates. 

This may say more than anything: he always keeps his audio recorder handy, even on vacation, just in case there's a story to be told.

Ways to Connect

Dillon Dodson / WPLN

President Donald Trump is not on the ballot, but his influence looms over Tennessee's elections going on now. Some of the first voters over the weekend made their decisions based on the president.

Jay Shah / WPLN

Nashville's four school board seats on the ballot this August have attracted scant attention given the competitive statewide races and congressional contests going on. They also haven’t seen the big spending from the 2016 school board elections that turned into a referendum on charter schools.

Courtesy The Black Church and HIV

More black churches in the Nashville area are participating in the annual Day of Unity this weekend, in which they agree to address HIV prevention from the pulpit. But many pastors sidestep the issue of gay relationships.

Blake Farmer / WPLN (File photo)

Tennessee's largest health insurer has found a way to bring down rates for individuals who buy plans on the marketplace. The first-ever decrease from BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee — which covers roughly half of the individuals on the marketplace — comes even as the Trump Administration added to uncertainty in recent days.

Blake Farmer / WPLN

The VA in Middle Tennessee is trying to cast a wider net for patients in a long-running effort to reduce veteran suicides, as the agency nationwide has been monitoring high-risk patients closer than ever.

Blake Farmer / WPLN

The vaccination effort to slow the spread of hepatitis A in Nashville has reached a new group — anyone who visited The Back Corner music venue in late June. An employee has been diagnosed with the contagious liver disease, which most people get over in about two weeks.

couresty the Curry family

A majority of infants in Tennessee are now breastfeeding at six months, a rate that is slightly above the national average and a substantial improvement for the state.

The new data comes after Tennessee has been promoting breastfeeding, even as rates across the South lag behind the rest of the country.

D.C. Circuit Courts

Tennessee's senators were complimentary of President Trump's pick for the U.S. Supreme Court on Monday night, but they withheld explicit support.

Republican Sens. Lamar Alexander and Bob Corker issued statements soon after the announcement.

Blake Farmer / WPLN (File photo)

Tennessee's Medicaid program is trying to make it easier for patients to get prescription drugs that help treat opioid addiction. The moves come after years of restricting access to the medication because of concerns about abuse and diversion.

Investigations of Railroad Accidents / via N C & StL Ry Preservation Society

There was a head-on collision of two trains at a site called Dutchman's Curve in West Nashville 100 years ago Monday, July 9. It remains the deadliest train crash in American history. But the tragedy has largely faded from the city's collective memory.

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