Health

KCUR News
11:40 am
Tue March 2, 2010

One In Three Small Town Residents Uninsured By 2019

Lawrence, Kan. – A new report by a rural think tank says rural Americans will be devastated if Congress fails to overhaul the nation's health care system

KCUR News
10:11 am
Tue March 2, 2010

Tax Committee Looking At Insurance Company Tax Credit

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.

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KCUR News
11:47 am
Mon March 1, 2010

Kansas Moves to Outlaw Marijuana-Mimicking Incense

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.

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KCUR News
10:24 am
Thu February 18, 2010

Southeast Kansas Still Lags In Health Rankings

Kansas City, Mo. – The first-ever study ranking the health of counties in every state shows the southeast corner of Kansas remains the state's least-healthy region.

KCUR News
12:28 pm
Tue February 9, 2010

State To Re-Examine Needs Of Kansans With Traumatic Brain Injury

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.

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KCUR News
11:25 am
Tue February 9, 2010

One In Eight Missourians Turned To Food Banks Last Year

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."

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KCUR News
2:12 pm
Mon February 8, 2010

Area Black Churches Respond to HIV/AIDS Crisis

Kansas City, Mo. – Several local churches are drawing attention this month to a growing problem in the African American community: HIV/AIDS.

African Americans make up about 13% of the area's population but account for almost half of newly diagnosed HIV cases, according to the local health department.

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KCUR News
2:27 pm
Fri February 5, 2010

Officials Hope To Reduce Heart Disease In Kansas

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.

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KCUR News
3:03 pm
Thu February 4, 2010

Kansas Seeks Answers To Infant Mortality Problem

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.

 

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Health
3:26 pm
Tue February 2, 2010

KDHE Will Try to Tackle Obesity During Legislative Session

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.

 

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The Economy Project
12:36 pm
Mon February 1, 2010

Kansas Mental Health Centers Stretched Thin

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.

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KCUR News
10:17 am
Mon February 1, 2010

Local Pediatrician Missing In Haiti: Friends and Colleagues Offer Reflections

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.

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KCUR News
10:54 am
Fri January 29, 2010

With Doctor Still Missing, Clinic's Celebration Is Bittersweet

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.

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KCUR News
1:59 pm
Wed January 27, 2010

Overland Park Senator Proposes Restoring Kansas Medicaid Cuts

Topeka, Kan. – A state senator wants Kansas lawmakers to restore $22 million in cuts for Medicaid reimbursements imposed by Governor Mark Parkinson.

Republican Senator Jeff Colyer of Overland Park, who is a physician, planned to offer the proposal during Senate debate Wednesday on a budget bill for the current fiscal year.

Parkinson, a Democrat, imposed the reduction in December as he sought to balance the state budget. The cut amounts to a 10 percent reduction in the rate paid to health care providers.

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KCUR News
9:45 am
Wed January 27, 2010

Kansas Hospitals For The Developmentally Disabled Won't Close

Topeka, Kan. – Kansas Governor Mark Parkinson won't shut down a state hospital for the developmentally disabled in Topeka - for now.

But Parkinson said the state will begin moving patients from the Kansas Neurological Institute in Topeka and the Parsons State Hospital and Training Center into community programs.

The governor says the lower populations could lead to the closing of either hospital in three or four years.

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KCUR News
3:51 pm
Tue January 26, 2010

Church Coalition Asks Moore To Back Healthcare Bill

Kansas City, Kansas – Kansas Congressman Dennis Moore, a Democrat, got a direct appeal to lobby House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and others to press the House version of the health care bill.

Moore met in a Kansas City, Kansas church with the group " Communities Creating Opportunity."

Two hundred members of at least fifteen Wyandotte and Johnson County churches made a plea for congressional action on jobs and health care.

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KCUR News
1:14 pm
Mon January 25, 2010

New Health Concerns About Bannister Federal Complex

Kansas City, Mo. – The Honeywell Plant has produced parts for nuclear weapons at the Bannister Federal Complex in South Kansas City for about 60 years. Plans to construct a $650 million new plant near the Richards Gebaur Air Force Base are awaiting final approval of a tax abatement from the Kansas City, Missouri's city council. The 10-building complex not only houses the plant, which produces non-nuclear components for weapons, but also the General Services Administration and the Department of Energy.

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KCUR News
3:48 pm
Fri January 22, 2010

Area Senator Introduces HPV Education Bill

Missouri State Senator Jolie Justus (D-District 10)

Kansas City, Mo. – A Kansas City Senator has filed a bill to give Missouri parents information on human papillomavirus and the HPV vaccine.

Democratic Senator Jolie Justus introduced the legislation. It calls on the Department of Health and Human Services to send parents of sixth graders information on HPV, related screenings, and the availability of a vaccine.

Justus says this information's important because the virus is strongly believed to cause most forms of cervical cancer.

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KCUR News
4:07 pm
Mon January 18, 2010

Working Towards A Better Life For Adults With Autism

Kansas City – Some studies estimate that as many as one in every hundred people has autism. There are a lot of services for school-kids with the disorder, but it's not an option for anyone older than 22. In response, autism experts and advocates recently gathered at the Kauffman Foundation, to come up with ways to make life better for people with autism as they get older. Kansas Public Radio's Bryan Thompson has more.

More from Kansas Public Radio's Bryan Thompson.

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KCUR News
6:09 pm
Sun January 17, 2010

Hundreds Rally In Opposition To Federal Health Care Overhaul

Jefferson City, Mo. – About 400 people gathered inside the Missouri Capitol last Wednesday to oppose federal health care legislation.

About three dozen Republican lawmakers joined the rally in support of a constitutional amendment allowing Missouri residents to opt out of the overhaul.

St. Louis County Republican Jane Cunningham is sponsoring the measure, which would prohibit individuals from being penalized if they don't buy health insurance.

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KCUR News
5:54 pm
Sun January 17, 2010

Kansas Smoking Ban Faces Hurdles In The House

Topeka, Kan. – One of Kansas Governor Mark Parkinson's priorities laid out in the State of the State address is a statewide smoking ban, but that issue has run into challenges in the legislature in past years.

The Kansas Senate passed a smoking ban last session, but couldn't reach a compromise with House leaders.

House Health and Human Services Committee Chair, Brenda Landwehr, says one of the major stumbling blocks has been an exemption for state-owned casinos.

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KCUR News
5:52 pm
Sun January 17, 2010

MO Supreme Court Hears Medical Malpractice Case

Jefferson City, Mo. – The Missouri Supreme Court heard arguments last Thursday regarding how much money people can be awarded in medical malpractice cases.

In 2005, James and Mary Klotz won a lawsuit against a St. Louis area hospital, after James contracted a staph infection while receiving a pacemaker. But the damages they won were limited due to a state law passed the same year they won their case that allows caps to be place retroactively on non-economic damages in medical malpractice suits.

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KCUR News
12:16 pm
Thu January 14, 2010

Plenty Of Flu Shots Available, Health Officials Step Up Vaccine Campaign

Kansas City, Mo. – Area health officials are encouraging everyone to get vaccinated against swine flu, despite the recent decline in cases.

Local community leaders and health officials rallied at the Kansas City Missouri Health Department yesterday to stress the importance of getting the H1N1 vaccine.

Margaret Donnelly, Director of the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services, approached City Councilwoman Melba Curls about getting vaccinated right there at the event.

"We've got your paperwork ready," said Donnelly.

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KCUR News
3:14 pm
Tue January 12, 2010

Health Officials Urge H1N1 Vaccination

Lawrence, Kan. – Kansas health officials say there's plenty of swine flu vaccine to go around now. they say it's free, and everyone ought to be immunized.

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KCUR News
10:06 am
Tue January 12, 2010

Kansas Governor Parkinson Calls For Higher Cigarette And Sales Taxes

Kansas Governor Mark Parkinson

Topeka, Kan. – Democratic Governor Mark Parkinson has outlined his proposals to deal with a deficit in the coming fiscal year. He made his case before the legislature during the State of the State address in Topeka. Statehouse Reporter Stephen Koranda files this report.

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KCUR News
3:10 pm
Mon January 11, 2010

Local Groups, Mexican Consulate Look To Address Health Of Area Latino Immigrants

Kansas City, Mo. – Kansas City is home to a growing Latino population - a large portion of which are recent immigrants from Mexico. But many have difficulty getting medical care due to a combination of factors, including language barriers and a lack of insurance. The situation has several area groups, along with the Mexican government, working to better identify the health needs in immigrant communities and find new ways to address them.

Transcript soon to be posted.

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KCUR News
10:00 am
Mon January 11, 2010

Swine Flu Deaths Continue To Mount

Lawrence, Kan. – Kansas has confirmed its 26th death due to the swine flu pandemic. That is the official toll, but the real number is probably much higher.

KCUR News
11:24 am
Wed January 6, 2010

Budget Forces Service Cuts for Kansas Elderly

Lawrence, KS – The ongoing budget shortfall in Kansas has prompted the Kansas Department on Aging to suspend some of the services that help frail elders continue to live in their own homes. Kansas Public Radio's Bryan Thompson reports.

Find out more about the Kansas Health Series on Kansas Public Radio here.

 

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KCUR News
12:22 pm
Tue January 5, 2010

Review Finds Lower Back Pain Treatment Ineffective

Kansas City, MO – A popular treatment for lower chronic back pain doesn't appear to work. That's according to a local neurologist, whose findings are part of the American Academy of Neurology's newly issued practice guidelines.

Trancutanious Electric Nerve Stimulation, also known as TENS, is a portable device that's applied to the skin around an area of pain. It then sends electrical currents through those nerves. The idea is that such stimulation could block pain signals to the brain.

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KCUR News
11:27 am
Thu December 31, 2009

CHIP Expansion Takes Effect in January

Kansas City, MO – Beginning in January, more kids will be able to get state health insurance in Kansas.

Specifically, children up to 250% of the 2008 federal poverty level will be eligible for the Children's Health Insurance Program, otherwise known as CHIP.

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