Rural Health

Those in rural areas face some distinctive health issues, including shortages of health professionals and services. Rural Kansans often must travel long distances for care and they tend to be older, poorer and less healthy than people in cities and suburbs. KHI researchers and journalists track the challenges facing rural residents, highlight solutions, and provide that information to policymakers and the public.

Hamilton County Hospital faces possible closure without $3 million boost

Petition seeks countywide vote on the question

2 | Hospitals, Rural Health

The Hamilton County commission has been presented a proposal to issue $3 million in no-fund warrants to support the hospital in this far western Kansas community. Administrators have said without the bond, the hospital would run out of money as early as June. Hospital officials will make the case to the community for approving the funds at a meeting scheduled for 7 p.m. Friday at the Syracuse High School gymnasium.

Policy and Research

Rural health results from the 2009 Kansas County Health Rankings

0 | May. 07, 2009 | Rural Health

The health care difficulties that rural areas face are unique from their urban counterparts. On top of limited staff sizes and finances, rural areas face the additional burden of long distances between health care providers and their constituents. This document describes how rural areas fared in the 2009 Kansas County Health Rankings.

Kansas Mission of Mercy - Garden City: Patient Characteristics, Needs, and Satisfaction

0 | Aug. 27, 2008 | Health Care Delivery, Rural Health, Safety Net

More than 15 percent of the patients served by a free dental clinic early this year reported they have never been to a dentist.

State health officials trying to help 'Mexican Mennonites'

0 | Nov. 24, 2007 | Rural Health, Rural Health, Social Determinants of Health

The story is familiar, but it has a twist: Immigrants from Mexico move to southwest Kansas seeking work at farms, feedlots or meat processing plants. Public health workers in the region respond with literature and services in Spanish to meet the needs of the immigrants.

Public health at the crossroads

0 | Mar. 02, 2006 | Public Health Systems and Services, Rural Health

March, 2006 - Roughly one-half of all local public health departments in the United States are both small and rural. Sixty percent of local health departments that responded to a survey in 2000 said they were located in a non-metropolitan area, the designation for “rural” developed by the Office of Management and Budget and used for policy purposes by agencies such as the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Forty-eight percent of local public health departments were categorized as “rural” in 2002 using a more refined definition, Rural-Urban Commuting Area Codes. One-half of local health departments responding to the 2000 survey served populations of fewer than 25,000 people, and 69 percent served populations of fewer than 50,000 people.

Kansas Mission of Mercy-Pittsburg: Patient Characteristics, Needs and Satisfaction

0 | Jun. 01, 2004 | Health Care Delivery, Rural Health, Safety Net

Kansas Mission of Mercy (KMOM), a free dental clinic sponsored by the Kansas Dental Charitable Foundation, served more than 2,000 patients on the campus of Pittsburg State University from April 30 through May 2, 2004. This report analyzes data from an exit survey given to participants of the clinic.

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News

Many rural hospitals excluded from government's push for better quality

0 | Sep. 30, 2014 | Health Reform, Hospitals, Rural Health

The Department of Health and Human Services has not yet incorporated the 1,256 primarily rural, “critical access” hospitals into Medicare’s pay-for-performance programs.

KU Hospital program receives $12 million federal grant

0 | Jul. 09, 2014 | Health Reform, Rural Health

The partnership to improve heart health and stroke survival rates involves the University of Kansas Hospital, Hays Medical Center, 10 critical access hospitals and rural primary care providers serving western Kansas.

Rural Kansas hospital focuses on 'mission-driven' medicine to recruit doctors

0 | Jul. 07, 2014 | Workforce, Rural Health

In Kearny County, on the High Plains near the Kansas-Colorado boundary where there are only about five residents per square mile, one small hospital has adopted a distinctive approach to recruitment that in a relatively short time has produced a staff that includes five doctors, five physician assistants and a growing volume of patients.

Future uncertain for VA rural health care pilot program

0 | Jun. 17, 2014 | Congress, Rural Health

The Access Received Closer to Home program allows veterans to get health care services from community providers if they live at least one hour from a VA health facility. Pratt is home to one of five sites across the country.

Robot helps save the day at rural hospital

0 | Jun. 02, 2014 | Health Care Delivery, Rural Health, Telemedicine

Some small, rural Kansas hospitals are using highly sophisticated medical robots in ways that are helping ease the shortage of specialists in their areas and - in at least one instance - boosting the bottom line.

In addition to premium credits, Obamacare helps some pay deductibles and co-pays

0 | Jul. 11, 2013 | Health Reform, Insurance

When people talk about health insurance affordability, they typically focus on premiums, the sticker price for a policy. For the plans being sold through the online health insurance marketplaces next year, much of the discussion has been on tax credits that can reduce the monthly premium for people with incomes up to 400 percent of the federal poverty level — $94,200 for a family of four in 2013.

New effort to tighten regulation of mental health drugs concerns advocates

0 | Nov. 24, 2014 | Health Care Delivery, Medicaid-CHIP, Mental Health

Kansas law currently bars state officials from placing restrictions on mental health drugs prescribed to Medicaid recipients. A legislative committee recommended repealing that law last week, saying the state needs to step in to prevent inappropriate uses of such drugs.

Rising KanCare costs adding to state’s budget problems

1 | Nov. 19, 2014 | Budget, Legislature, KanCare

While the state already faces a projected $280 million revenue this budget year, an additional $40 million is needed to meet rising KanCare costs.

Kansas safety net clinics seek federal funding for new sites

0 | Nov. 25, 2014 | Health Reform, Safety Net

At least six organizations in Kansas are asking the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services for grants to open new clinics.

KU Medical Center group recruits rural teens for health jobs

0 | Nov. 25, 2014 | KU Medical Center, Workforce

The Area Health Education Center aims to recruit rural high school students into careers in the medical field, in the hopes they will then return to their homes and help fill gaps in access to care.

KCK home health provider convicted on Medicaid fraud charges

0 | Nov. 25, 2014 | Courts, Medicaid-CHIP

The conviction was announced Tuesday by Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt, whose office is working with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to investigate home health care fraud.

Salina dentists rally to halt anti-fluoride momentum

10 | Nov. 03, 2014 | Campaign 2014, Child Health, Oral Health

Dozens of dentists in Salina rallied opposition to a ballot measure to remove fluoride from the city's water supply, and voters rejected the measure by a 2-to-1 margin Tuesday.

Kansas mental health system under increasing stress

16 | Aug. 18, 2014 | Mental Health

Directors at many of the 26 community mental health centers in Kansas say the system is breaking down because state funding hasn’t kept pace with the increasing demands for care in their communities.

Meetings on support programs for Kansans with disabilities set for next week

3 | Nov. 07, 2014 | KDADS, KanCare, Medicaid-CHIP

The Kansas Department for Aging and Disability Services plans informational sessions in Wichita, Hays and Lawrence.

KDHE surveyors sent to Osawatomie State Hospital

4 | Oct. 30, 2014 | KDADS, KDHE, Mental Health

The 206-bed inpatient facility for adults with severe and persistent mental illnesses this week had 235 patients.

Davis vows to reverse controversial KanCare decision if elected

6 | Oct. 08, 2014 | Campaign 2014, KanCare

The Democratic candidate for governor says support services to Kansans with developmental disabilities should not be part of the state's privatized Medicaid program.

Rising KanCare costs adding to state’s budget problems

1 | Nov. 19, 2014 | Budget, Legislature, KanCare

While the state already faces a projected $280 million revenue this budget year, an additional $40 million is needed to meet rising KanCare costs.

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