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

Blake Farmer / WPLN

A 5-year-old named Stella practices her kick at the Brentwood YMCA, during a "soft opening" ahead of Memorial Day weekend. And a health reporter asks a leading question: "You showered first, right?"

"Say 'yeah,' " Heather Clendenin instructs her daughter, encouraging a fib.

Blake Farmer / WPLN

Imagine a surgeon scouring the web for how-to videos during a complex procedure. It happens, especially in the ever-evolving and rapidly growing world of implantable medical devices.

So now, a virtual reality system is trying to help surgeons prepare to use all the new equipment available to them.

Tony Gonzalez / WPLN

Nashville's first mayoral forum of the 2019 election found unanimity on the issue of dockless scooters and their increasingly apparently safety hazards.

Blake Farmer / WPLN (File photo)

A year after declaring Nashville was experiencing an outbreak of hepatitis A, the virus is on its way out. Public health officials say the number of new cases has plunged, and they're crediting efforts to inoculate people most at risk of contracting the disease.

courtesy Business Wire

A Swiss maker of implantable medical devices is moving its U.S. headquarters from Chicago to Franklin. The company represents a sector that has been largely absent from Nashville's health care industry.

courtesy VUMC

Nashville's largest hospital is launching a part-time addiction clinic, so overdose victims have somewhere close to go after the emergency room. Vanderbilt University Medical Center's new "bridge clinic" began ramping up Friday.

courtesy VUMC

The United Network for Organ Sharing is returning to its old distribution map governing donated livers after a federal court in Atlanta threatened to hold the agency in contempt.

courtesy TSPN

The Tennessee Suicide Prevention Network will more than double in size thanks to a budget bump from state government. Governor Bill Lee directed an additional $625,000 in recurring money to the nonprofit as part of a broader effort aimed at improving mental health.

courtesy VUMC

As of 7:51 a.m. Tuesday, the method for distributing donated organs to dying patients became a bit more equitable. Or at least, that's what the United Network for Organ Sharing intended when it crafted new distribution rules. 

Updated May 17, 2019, 6 p.m. ET

A lawsuit over how to distribute donated livers to dying patients took some startling turns this week.

The United Network for Organ Sharing is returning for the moment to an earlier system for distributing donated livers which it had changed on Tuesday, after a federal court in Atlanta threatened to hold the agency in contempt.