Health

KCUR News
10:29 am
Thu February 3, 2011

Kansas Senate Looks at Insurance for Children

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – The Kansas Senate will be considering changes to the state's high risk insurance program today. The program, which is separate from the new federal high risk pool, is designed for people who can't get health insurance in the private market due to a pre-existing health condition.

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KCUR News
2:18 pm
Fri January 28, 2011

South Kansas City Gets Safety Net Clinic

Virrinda Eferakeya checks people in for appointments at the new Swope Health South Clinic.
Photo by Elana Gordon.

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – South Kansas City is finally home to a safety net health clinic. It recently started seeing patients, but the clinic's been in the works for years.

The Kansas City Missouri Health Department, the Local Investment Commission, and Swope Health Services have been leading the effort. They say South Kansas City lacks affordable primary care options.

Vincent Murry, who lives just a few blocks from new the clinic, agrees.

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KCUR News
12:36 pm
Fri January 28, 2011

New Waiver Offers Some Relief To Missourians With Developmental Disabilities

The office of the Developmental Disabilities Services of Jackson County will select 90 county residents, who are already waiting for services, for the new waiver program.
Photo by Elana Gordon.

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Missourians with developmental disabilities have a new option for getting community and home-based services. Governor Jay Nixon met with families and health workers at the Developmental Disability Services of Jackson County office on Friday to highlight the new program's goal: getting care to people before they're in crisis.

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KCUR News
2:18 pm
Thu January 27, 2011

Kansas Starts Developing Insurance Exchange

KCUR News
3:04 am
Thu January 27, 2011

Brownback Restructures Kansas Health Policy Authority

LAWRENCE, Ks. – The Kansas Health Policy Authority is being restructured. The Authority administers the state's Medicaid program, oversees health benefits for state employees, and provides health policy advice to elected officials. Governor Sam Brownback wants to cut the agency's staff in half, eliminate its independent board, and reassign the agency's responsibilities. Kansas Public Radio's Bryan Thompson reports on some of the implications of these changes.
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KCUR News
2:51 pm
Mon January 24, 2011

Choosing a Long Term Care Facility

KCUR News
2:01 am
Thu January 20, 2011

Area Reps Vote On Health Law Repeal

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Missouri's fifth district representative Emanuel Cleaver says he doesn't think yesterday's passage of a bill to repeal the federal health care law poses a real threat. The Senate's likely to reject the measure. But Cleaver, a democrat who strongly supports health reform, says he is concerned with GOP plans to try to defund the law in the coming months.

"If the funds are withheld or if significant dollars are withheld, there won't be the change we had hoped for, particularly in poor communities and disaffected communities," Cleaver says.

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KCUR News
9:28 am
Tue January 18, 2011

Proposed Closure of Kansas Facility For Developmentally Disabled Would Be Gradual

Lawrence, KS – The Kansas Neurological Institute (KNI) serves some 150 profoundly disabled adults. If the Kansas Legislature approves the proposal, the facility would be closed gradually. The entire process could take as long as three years, according to Bill Miskell, who's with the Kansas Department of Social and Rehabilitation Services.

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KCUR News
12:05 am
Mon January 17, 2011

Missouri Lowers Premiums For Pre-existing Condition Pool

Kansas City, MO – Missouri's high risk insurance program has announced it's dropping premiums by as much as twenty five percent.

The state launched the pool this summer as part of the federal health law. But state insurance director John Huff says only a couple hundred people have enrolled in it so far. Huff says lowering the monthly premiums, which range from about $250 to $1,000, will hopefully change that.

"I hope it makes health coverage more affordable and accessible for Missourians - that's the intent," says Huff.

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KCUR News
4:39 pm
Thu January 13, 2011

Brownback Seeks to Close Kansas Health Policy Authority

Salina, KS – Less than five years after it was created, the Kansas Health Policy Authority is on the chopping block. Governor Sam Brownback wants to abolish the agency, and merge its programs into the Department of Health and Environment.

The Brownback administration says doing so would save nearly $3 million dollars in administrative costs. With a budget of almost $1.5 billion, it's one of the largest operations in state government.

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KCUR News
11:56 am
Thu January 13, 2011

Kansas AG Asks To Join Health Care Lawsuit

Salina, KS – Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt is asking that Kansas be allowed to join a lawsuit to do away with the requirement that most Americans buy health insurance, starting in 2014. Kansas Public Radio's Bryan Thompson explains what might happen if the mandate is eliminated.

 

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KCUR News
11:37 am
Thu January 13, 2011

Testing Begins At KCK School After Student Diagnosed With TB

Kansas City, KS – An eighth grader at Rosedale Middle School in Kansas City, Kansas has been diagnosed with an active case tuberculosis, or TB.

Officials at the school say they can't remember having ever dealt with a case of TB before. They met with several dozen parents last night to discuss the situation. Jannette Ayala has two kids at Rosedale. She says she has several questions about the situation.

"When are they going to do the testing? How soon are they going to get it done? How many other students have it[TB]?"

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KCUR News
10:49 am
Wed January 12, 2011

Missouri House OKs Measure Challenging Health Law

Jefferson City, MO – The Republican-dominated Missouri House has passed a non-binding resolution urging state officials to join a multistate lawsuit challenging the federal health care overhaul and calling on Congress to repeal the law.

The House approved the resolution Tuesday on a vote of 115-46.

The measure calls on Democratic Attorney General Chris Koster to join with other states in suing over the federal health care law passed last year, or to file a separate suit.

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KCUR News
11:47 am
Tue January 11, 2011

Tax Credits Spur Health Coverage For Area Small Businesses

Salina, KS – Expanding health insurance coverage is one of the main goals of the Affordable Care Act. Most of the new health care law takes effect in 2014, but parts of it are in effect now. One such part is designed to make coverage available to a group of people who are among the most likely to be uninsured employees of small businesses.

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KCUR News
10:26 am
Tue January 11, 2011

$2 Million Study Examines Tobacco Use in Missouri

St. Louis, Missouri – The Missouri Foundation for Health is providing close to $2 million dollars to fund a state-wide survey of tobacco use and its health effects. The largest adult health study ever conducted in the state will reach more than 52,000 Missourians.

The year-long study is a follow-up to a similar one conducted in 2007.

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KCUR News
10:23 am
Tue January 11, 2011

$2 Million Study Examines Tobacco Use in Missouri

St. Louis, Missouri – The Missouri Foundation for Health is providing close to $2 million dollars to fund a state-wide survey of tobacco use and its health effects. The largest adult health study ever conducted in the state will reach more than 52,000 Missourians.

The year-long study is a follow-up to a similar one conducted in 2007.

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KCUR News
7:18 pm
Mon January 10, 2011

Missouri Starts Licensing Therapists Under New Autism Law

Kansas City, MO – Missouri's autism insurance mandate takes effect this month. The law requires insurance companies to cover autism therapies for children. The state's gearing up to license therapists to do the work, but as KCUR's Elana Gordon reports, that process is just getting underway.
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Missouri's new law requires state-regulated insurance companies to cover up to $40,000 a year in an intensive therapy, called applied behavioral analysis (ABA), for children up to the age of 18.

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KCUR News
5:48 pm
Fri January 7, 2011

Few Kansas Nursing Homes Deficiency-Free

Prairie Village, KS – For more than a decade, the non-profit Kansas Advocates for Better Care, or KABC, has released an annual report detailing the best and worst performing nursing homes in the state. The findings are based on state inspections over a three year period (the inspections occur once every 12 to 15 months).

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KCUR News
4:29 pm
Mon January 3, 2011

Protecting Newborns: Region Highlights Safe Haven Laws

Kansas City, MO – Safe Haven laws are designed to protect abandoned newborns from harm or death. Both Missouri and Kansas have had laws on the books for several years. But as KCUR's Elana Gordon reports, local children's advocates worry the statutes may be underused.
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Safe Haven laws allow parents to safely turn over a newborn without fear of prosecution.

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KCUR News
3:14 pm
Mon January 3, 2011

Brownback Names Heads of KDHE, SRS

Topkea, KS – Governor-elect Sam Brownback today named his choices to head two health and human services agencies.

Dr. Robert Moser will head the Kansas Department of Health and Environment. Moser currently works at the University of Kansas School of Medicine's Wichita branch. Before that he worked with Greeley County Health Services.

Moser says one of his priorities will be focusing on preventative medicine.

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KCUR News
8:43 am
Tue December 28, 2010

Army Boot Camp Embraces New-Age Fitness

Kansas City, MO –

 

During the past decade, the U.S. Army has faced what it regards as a serious internal threat: young recruits entering in terrible shape.

In a radical shift, the Army is overhauling the way it trains, cares for and feeds new soldiers.

So, as fad workouts increasingly borrow Army terms like "boot camp," actual basic training is starting to look a bit like a new-age fitness camp but with harsh words, severe haircuts and fire arms.

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KCUR News
12:33 pm
Mon December 27, 2010

KC Gets Infusion of Free Flu Shots To Combat Vaccine Disparities

Kansas City, MO – Kansas City, Missouri is getting an infusion of free flu vaccines this winter - 20,000 to be exact. And, they're being directed towards people who may be less likely to get the shot.

Walgreens recently donated the shots to help reduce vaccine disparities.

Captain Jose Belardo is Acting Regional Health Administrator with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services - he's overseeing the initiative.

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KCUR News
1:59 pm
Tue December 21, 2010

Caring For Kids With Life-Threatening Illnesses

Kansas City, MO – The idea that a child might die is something that's difficult to grasp, even for hospitals. Children's Mercy in Kansas City has only had a palliative care program for a few years. Rosemary Hubble manages the program. She's a petite woman, originally from Great Britain. But as KCUR's Elana Gordon reports, she serves an important - though not prominently featured - role at the hospital.

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KCUR News
12:39 pm
Thu December 16, 2010

Competitive Bids in Medicare Coming to KC: Overdue Or Oversold?

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KCUR News
9:31 am
Wed December 15, 2010

Nixon Seeks Reauthorization of Missouri Prescription Program

St. Louis, Missouri – Governor Jay Nixon is calling upon the General Assembly to reauthorize Missouri Rx, the state program that provides prescription drug assistance to low-income seniors and people with disabilities.

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KCUR News
9:17 am
Wed December 15, 2010

Kansas Could Help Develop Health Insurance Exchanges

Topeka, KS – Kansas could be one of the states that helps develop health insurance exchanges, part of the federal health reform law. The exchanges will be pools of insurance options that Kansans will be able to choose from. As KPR's Stephen Koranda reports, the federal government will be making grants available to states to develop test systems.

 

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KCUR News
3:27 pm
Tue December 14, 2010

KS Will Continue Preparing For Health Care Law Changes

Topeka, KS – Officials in Kansas are going to continue preparing for the national health care law to take effect.

A federal court in Virginia recently ruled against the law's insurance mandate.

Kansas Insurance Commissioner Sandy Praeger says at this point the state needs to continue working to prepare for any changes.

"This is going to be decided way down the line and probably at the supreme court level," Praeger says. "There will be numerous appeals."

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KCUR News
10:41 am
Tue December 14, 2010

New Report: Smoking Causes Immediate Damage to Health

Topkea, KS – The top health officer in Kansas is warning smokers to take notice of a recently released report on the dangers of smoking.

The report from the U.S. Surgeon General shows that smoking and second-hand smoke cause immediate damage to the heat and lungs.

State Health Officer Dr. Jason Eberhart-Phillips says that increases the likely hood of heart attacks and strokes.

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KCUR News
10:24 am
Tue December 14, 2010

Missouri Governor Reacts To Health Care Ruling

Jefferson City, MO – Republicans in Missouri are praising Monday's ruling by a federal judge in Virginia that declared portions of the new federal health care law unconstitutional.

The Missouri Republican Party released a statement criticizing Democratic Senator Claire McCaskill for supporting the bill and "thumbing her nose at the clear will of Missourians."

The State GOP also accused Governor Jay Nixon of ducking the issue altogether.

Nixon did respond to a question about the ruling during a press conference in Columbia on Monday.

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Health
12:31 pm
Fri December 10, 2010

'Whooping Cough' Hits St. Louis

St. Louis, Missouri – Pertussis is on the rise in St. Louis County (but not Kansas City). More commonly known as "whooping cough," pertussis has sickened close to 200 St. Louis residents this year, most of them in the past six weeks.

The highly contagious bacterial infection spreads through airborne droplets when an infected person coughs or sneezes. Infants, small children, and pregnant women are especially at risk.

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