Kansas City, MO – A medical society program which connects uninsured residents in Johnson and Wyandotte Counties with donated health services is experiencing major backlogs. KCUR's Elana Gordon reports.
Nearly 300 specialists currently participate in the three-year-old program called Wy/Jo Care. Through it, doctors donate their time on a rotating basis. Safety net clinics refer uninsured patients to them.
Salina, KS – State and local governments, and community and tribal organizations have until August 6th to apply for a total of 40 million dollars in federal outreach grants to help enroll uninsured children in government health insurance programs. More from Kansas Public Radio's Bryan Thompson.
Kansas City, MO – Major reductions to a program aimed at improving the health of low income Missourians take effect today.
The state's three year old health and wellness program allows special nurses and health workers to regularly follow-up with Medicaid recipients. The staff is available by phone 24 hours a day to provide advice about healthy living and help connect patients with care.
Lenexa, KS – Earlier this month, the Johnson County Parks Board voted to bring in sharpshooters and bow hunters, to help solve the problem of too many deer in Shawnee Mission Park. At the time, some residents raised concerns about a rising tick population as a result of the deer increase.
Kansas City, MO – Kathleen Sebelius, the former Kansas Governor who's now U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services, drew attention to state-specific health problems today. It's part of the White House's latest push to overhaul the nation's health care system. KCUR's Elana Gordon has more.
Kansas City, MO – Kathleen Sebelius, the former governor of Kansas and now Secretary of Health and Human Services, has successfully pulled a top Kansas leader to join her in Washington D.C.
The U.S. Senate has confirmed Kathy Greenlee as the new Assistant Secretary for Aging. The announcement means she'll be leaving her post as the Kansas Secretary of Aging and work for her former boss at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
Kansas City, MO – Health agencies across the metro are increasing their efforts to prevent the spread of HIV tomorrow and Saturday.
Several clinics have set up free, walk-in HIV testing sites in honor of National HIV Testing Day and in order to highlight the prevalence of the disease, which infects a new person every nine and a half minutes or so.
Samantha Hughes is with the Kansas City health department and says the agency now recommends that everyone know their HIV status.
Kansas City, MO – Kansas officials are considering merging or closing several state-run facilities in response to the current budget crisis. The adult psychiatric hospital in Wyandotte County is one of six places under review. But that has many area law enforcement officials concerned.
Kansas City, MO – Services for people who are uninsured or underinsured are receiving a much-needed boost from one of the area's main health care foundations.
The Reach Health Care Foundation recently announced it's more than doubled the amount of money it's directing towards core health services. Brenda Sharpe is the foundation's CEO, and says the decision this year to focus more on protecting ongoing programs - as opposed to funding new ones - was in large part due to the growing need for basic medical services.
Kansas City, MO – This weekend, a funeral was held in Wichita for Dr. George Tiller, one of the area's most controversial figures since the 1980s. Tiller was one of just a few physicians in the country who provided late abortions, until he was shot inside his church last Sunday. The day after that, some two hundred people gathered near JC Nichols Fountain on the Plaza to mourn his death. KCUR's Elana Gordon was there, and asked people how Dr. Tiller's murder might affect the tone of the abortion debate.
Kansas City, MO – Dr. George Tiller's Wichita clinic is closed for the rest of the week as a gesture of morning the slain physician. It will reopen Monday staffed by three out-of-state doctors who have worked there on a rotating basis for several years. One of them, Dr. LeRoy Carhart, told reporters yesterday that the clinic will continue to offer "all of the services it has in the past."
Kansas City, MO – The Missouri Department of Health has ramped down its surveillance of swine flu. There are currently 38 confirmed cases in the state, but as KCUR's Elana Gordon reports, health officials are no longer attempting to keep track of every person that may be infected.
Kansas City, MO – Missouri Governor Jay Nixon stopped at UMKC's nursing school yesterday, to highlight a recently approved initiative aimed at expanding the state's health care workforce. KCUR's Elana Gordon reports.
Kansas City, MO – Kansas City's National Archives Center opened to the public this past weekend. A newly renovated freight building next to Union Station now houses some 15 million federal documents from throughout the region. For years, they were stored in what archivists there describe as a difficult-to-access federal depot in South Kansas City. In honor of the new space, the center put together an exhibit showcasing key moments in local and national history. KCUR's Elana Gordon has more.
Kansas City, MO – Children's Mercy is opening a center for pediatric bioethics. The hospital says it needs such a program due to the increasingly complex ethical issues that arise from advancements in medical technology.
Dr. John Lantos is in charge of the new center. He says the growing areas of personalized medicine and genetics at Children's Mercy have great potential, but also raise important ethical concerns.
Jefferson City, MO – State lawmakers have until Friday to reach a compromise on healthcare expansion, after the Missouri House passed its plan last night.
The House bill covers about 20-thousand Missourians who simply cannot get insurance. The Senate's version, which closely mirrors the plan proposed by Governor Jay Nixon, expands Medicaid eligibility to cover an additional 35-thousand low-income, working parents.
Columbia Democrat Mary Still says the House's version will drain the state's high-risk insurance pool.
Jefferson City, MO – House Republicans are unhappy with the final version of Missouri's state budget. Senate negotiators and House Democrats agreed to include an expansion of Medicaid in one of the budget bills. It would expand health coverage to about 35-thousand working parents in Missouri. But House Majority Floor Leader Steven Tilley says they may reject the provision.
Kansas City, MO – Just about one in every hundred fifty kids will be diagnosed with autism. Parents and autism researchers say early treatment can make a huge difference in the child's later life. That treatment can cost a lot - tens of thousands of dollars a year. But most insurance companies don't cover it. Well, at least not here. Nine states now require group insurance plans to pay for the diagnosis and treatment of autism. Lawmakers in Kansas and Missouri pushed for similar legislation this year.
Kansas City, MO – The Kansas City Public Safety and Neighborhoods committee heard a report from the Health Department on the city's preparedness for a possible swine flu outbreak Wednesday.
Dr. Rex Archer emphasized that the virus that appears to have showed up in the Kansas City area Wednesday is new and may still be mutating, so no one knows if it is as potent as the one that has caused a large number of deaths in Mexico.
But if an epidemic develops, he says the city is well-prepared, and offers this status report:
Kansas City, MO – Two Kansans are among the some twenty people infected with a new strain of swine flu in the U.S.
The Kansas Department of Health and Environment, or KDHE, reports the infected couple live in Dickenson County. That's about 150 miles west of Kansas City. One of the infected individuals recently traveled from an airport in Wichita to Mexico, where the strain has likely sickened more than 1300 people and killed at least twenty. None of the U.S. cases have been fatal.