Kansas AG reports tobacco settlement money tops projections

State will get about $7 million more than previously forecast

0 | Children, Legislature, Tobacco

Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt announced the receipt of $62.2 million from the tobacco master settlement agreement, which is about $7 million more than first projected as payment to the state for 2013. Children's advocates say the extra money should be used to fund children's programs.

Larned State Hospital 100th anniversary celebrated

0 | KDADS, Hospitals, Mental Health

State officials celebrated the 100th anniversary of the state's largest psychiatric hospital.

Brownback signs law expanding autism coverage

About 750 children expected to benefit over the next two or three years

0 | Child Health, Legislature, Insurance

Gov. Sam Brownback signed into a law a measure that is expected to make insurance coverage for autism services available to about 750 Kansas children over the next two to three years.

Kansas metal finishing company charged with violating Clean Water Act

0 | Courts, Environment, KDHE

A Minneapolis plating company is being charged with 20 counts of violating the Clean Water Act after allegedly dumping chemicals in the sewer system of that city.

Mental health task force report released

0 | Mental Health

A 16-member task force that spent much of the past year looking for ways to improve the state’s mental health system released its findings.

Memorial service scheduled for longest-serving Kansas Cabinet secretary

Bob Harder died Saturday at age 84

0 | Advocacy, Agencies

Robert Harder, the longest-serving Cabinet secretary in Kansas history, died Saturday. He was 84. Harder served five governors - three Republicans and two Democrats - while overseeing the state welfare department and later the Kansas Department of Health and Environment. In his later years he continued to advocate for the poor and disabled as a volunteer.

NIH director talks about one and done at KU — for flu shots

Bioscience discussion also covers NIH funding, drug development

0 | KU Medical Center

The annual flu vaccine could be a thing of the past by the end of the decade, the director of the National Institutes of Health said during a visit to the University of Kansas Medical Center.

Governor urged to veto health care compact bill

0 | Legislature, Health Reform

Representatives of AARP and Insurance Commissioner Sandy Praeger urged Gov. Sam Brownback to veto a bill that seeks to give states control of Medicare and Medicaid.

KanHIT work groups to study secondary-use policies

Sales of health data might shore up network finances, council chair says

0 | KDHE, HIE-HIT

Members of a council that is advising the state on how to govern the digital exchange of patient health information met again to talk about ways to regulate the so-called "secondary use" of the data. As more medical providers feed their patient information to the two exchange networks operating in the state, the network managers are expected to receive more requests for access to the data from researchers, marketers, drug companies and others.

Widick named KNI superintendent

0 | KDADS, Hospitals

Brent Widick, 49, has been interim superintendent at Kansas Neurological Institute since December 2013. He succeeds Barney Hubert, who retired after nearly 35 years at the state hospital.

Managed care program for elderly to expand in Kansas

PACE helps frail seniors avoid nursing home care

0 | KDADS, Health Care Delivery, Medicaid-CHIP

Programs for All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly - a Medicare- and Medicaid-funded managed care program for people who are 55 or older, low-income and close to being admitted to a nursing home - will expand in the next few years to provide service in 59 Kansas counties. Currently the program known as PACE only is available in eight counties.

Kansas officials set to begin drafting 50-year water plan

0 | Environment

The team of Kansas water officials working to shape the future of water resources in the state is one step closer to drafting its 50-year water plan after a Friday meeting to share public input gathered from more than 140 meetings across the state.

Wyandot Inc. CEO announces retirement

0 | Community Health, Mental Health

Pete Zevenbergen, the CEO of Wyandot Inc. who expanded the scope of Wyandotte County’s community mental health center, announced his retirement Thursday.

KCK home health provider indicted on fraud charges

0 | Community Health, Health Care Delivery, Other

A Kansas City, Kan., home health attendant was indicted Wednesday in a federal fraud case in which Medicaid paid more than $587,000 based on fraudulent billing practices.

Sebelius resigns; Obama names OMB chief Burwell to head HHS

0 | Government, Agencies, Health Reform, Outside Source

After a five-year tenure that included the flawed rollout of the health care law and stormy relations with Capitol Hill Republicans, Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius is resigning, a White House official said late Thursday.

KDHE picks Belfry for communications post

0 | KDHE

Sara Belfry is currently deputy director of communications for Gov. Sam Brownback's office. She will begin her full-time position at KDHE on April 14.

Issue Brief: Currently Eligible Adults in Medicaid: The Few Who Qualify

0 | Medicaid-CHIP

It is a common misconception that all poor Kansans are eligible for Medicaid. In reality, only a few are actually eligible. To inform the discussion KHI has released a new issue brief (link) that examines in detail who is—and who is not—currently eligible for the combined Medicaid and Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) in Kansas.

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