Kansas City, Mo. – A new clinic will soon open in South Kansas City that's intended to make health care easier to access in the area.
After reviewing more than 30 locations, Swope Health Services has announced it's building a new clinic at 88th Street and Troost. Dr. William Pankey is chief medical officer at Swope. He says there's a huge gap when it comes to the availability of safety net health services in that part of the city.
Jefferson City, Mo. – The Missouri House has passed a wide-ranging bill that would create new requirements surrounding abortions. The new requirements include notifying prosecutors anytime a girl younger than 18 seeks an abortion, whether she goes through with it or not.
GOP House Member Brian Nieves of Franklin County says it would reduce the number of abortions performed in Missouri.
"And hopefully, bringing to justice the sick, disgusting people that would actually rape an underage child," Nieves says.
Topeka, Kan. – A so-called "Health Care Freedom Amendment" to the Kansas constitution failed today in the House. The amendment is aimed at exempting the state from federal health care laws that would require Kansans to have health insurance.
Supporters have argued it would send a message that they disapprove of the law signed today by President Obama. But they fell nine votes short of the two-thirds majority needed to pass a constitutional amendment.
Topeka, Kan. – Kansas third district Representative Dennis Moore says he plans to vote in favor of the health care reconciliation bill when it comes to the floor of the House.
Moore serves on the House Budget Committee, which is charged with reviewing legislation under the rules of reconciliation. That committee has reported the so called Reconciliation Act of 2010 to the House Rules Committee with instructions. That's the last stop before a vote by the full House.
Topeka, Kan. / Jefferson City, Mo. – A measure pushing back against the federal government passed in the Kansas House Monday by a vote of 109 to 11. The resolution calls on the federal government to stop passing laws that put mandates on the states.
Proponents have argued the federal government is encroaching on states' rights. The non-binding measure has no legal authority, but Republican Representative Joe Patton told fellow lawmakers it still carries weight.
Kansas City, Mo. – The Kansas City Missouri Police Department has announced it's setting aside $300,000 from its budget to support the violence prevention program Aim4Peace. Most public funding for the initiative ran out last spring, but some grants have helped keep it running. Police Captain Rich Lockhart says the department wants to ensure Aim4Peace continues operating because it's allowed for a more holistic approach to fighting crime.
Kansas City, Mo. – The Kansas House Taxation Committee is holding hearings this week to get more information on some tax credits. Lawmakers may consider cutting back or eliminating some credits as a way to raise revenue. Lawmakers yesterday heard how getting rid of a credit for insurance companies could cost the state jobs.
Kansas City, Mo. – In most states marijuana remains illegal. But across the Kansas City region, some people wanting to get high are turning to a legal synthetic version. It's commonly known as K2, but also goes by names like Spice and Yucatan Fire. Now Kansas and some other states, including Missouri, are moving to ban the chemicals in these herbal blends. KCUR's Elana Gordon has more on this relatively new trend and its uncertain future.
Overland Park, Kan. – About one in ten people deal with brain injury. Awareness has gone up in recent years, but it's still a silent epidemic, according to Betsy Johnson. Johnson's a speech language pathologist and director of the Brain Injury Association of Kansas and Greater Kansas City, which is launching a public forum this Wednesday to revise the plan Kansas has for dealing with the issue. KCUR's Elana Gordon caught up with Johnson.
Kansas City, Mo. – As many as 728,000 Missourians took help from emergency food banks last year. That's according to a survey by Feeding America and the Missouri Food Bank Association, which is made up of six major organizations, including Harvesters in the Kansas City area.
Scott Baker, director of the umbrella group, says he thinks a lot of people will be surprised by the data.
"When you're talking about one in eight Missourians, that's a significant number," he says. "We're talking about your neighbors."
Topeka, Kan. – Health officials gathered at the Statehouse today to raise awareness about heart disease, the number one killer of men and women in Kansas.
Governor Mark Parkinson says he hopes legislators can help reduce the disease in Kansas by passing a statewide smoking ban. Smoking is one of the leading causes of heart disease. Parkinson says he's critical of a smoking ban bill introduced in the House that contains exceptions for some businesses.
Topeka, Kan. – If it's true that infant mortality is a good indicator of a population's health, Kansas isn't doing so well. A blue ribbon panel has been trying to figure out what's to blame and what to do about it, as Kansas Public Radio's Bryan Thompson reports.
Topeka, KS – The Kansas Department of Health and Environment will be pushing for laws this legislative session that they hope will help Kansans slim down. State Health Director Dr. Jason Eberhart-Phillips told Kansas Public Radio's Stephen Koranda that around one-third of Kansas adults are overweight. He says an additional third of adults are obese, meaning they're at least 30 pounds overweight.
Kansas City, MO – A third of community mental health centers in Kansas are operating in the red. Nine out of 27 spent more than they took in last year, according to the Kansas Department of Social and Rehabilitation Services.
This year's revenue may not be any better for centers, now that the state's also enacted a ten percent cut to Medicaid reimbursements, according to the SRS's Rick Shults.
Kansas City, Kan. – Turner House Children's Clinic celebrated its twentieth anniversary last week. The clinic serves thousands of uninsured and underserved children living in Kansas City, Kansas. The event, though, was bittersweet. Dr. Frank Vaughters founded the clinic, but was gone on a medical mission in Haiti when the earthquake hit more than two weeks ago. He's still missing.
Kansas City, Kan. – A local children's clinic has turned twenty, but its celebration yesterday was bittersweet.
Several dozen people gathered at Turner House Children's Clinic to recognize its two decades of providing health care to underserved kids in Kansas City, Kansas. The event also honored one of the clinic's founders, Dr. Frank Vaughters.
Dr. Vaughters was on a medical mission in Haiti when the earthquake hit more than two weeks ago. He's still missing.