KHI News Service

Kansas Health Matters website demonstrated to lawmakers

Information will be broadly useful while helping local health departments gain accreditation

By KHI NEWS SERVICE | January 25, 2012

The Senate and House health committees today saw the new Kansas Health Matters website demonstrated during a joint session.

Chad Austin, vice president of the Kansas Hospital Association, showed committee members the site's many features, including elements that will allow officials at local health departments and others to view health data specific to their community or county and compare it with the data from other locations in the state.

The website is a product of the Kansas Partnership for Improving Community Health, a collaborative that includes several health organizations, including the hospital association, the Kansas Department of Health and Environment, local health departments, the Kansas Health Institute and others.

KDHE Secretary Dr. Robert Moser told the committee that the website would be "an essential tool in upcoming health assessments and health improvement planning conducted by our local health departments and hospitals."

He said the website would help local officials identify a community's "most pressing health needs" and then provide them information on the best way to meet the needs.

He said the website also would be helpful to local health departments as they seek state and national accreditation, a process that is intended to assure that the agencies meet certain performance standards.

Moser said the site could be useful to a wide variety of people including, news reporters, students, county commissioners, business people and charities.

Among the KDHE information included on the site is data from the agency's Bureau of Vital Statistics on its immunization survey. Also included is information such as hospital discharge data.