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.

Solving the puzzling mental health issues of Bhutanese refugees

0 | Oct. 28, 2014 | Health Disparities, Mental Health

Yoga - an ancient practice - has helped Bhutanese refugees lower their levels of pain, anxiety and depression.

Lawsuit against KanCare company puts program in spotlight again

0 | Oct. 30, 2014 | Courts, KanCare

In a lawsuit filed this week, the former Sunflower State Health Plan official claimed she was fired after she objected to a directive to shift KanCare members away from high-cost providers.

KDHE surveyors sent to Osawatomie State Hospital

2 | 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.

Praeger shares individual mandate concerns

0 | Jun. 23, 2010 | Health Reform, Insurance, Mental Health

Kansas Insurance Commissioner Sandy Praeger says she’s all for doing away with the “pre-existing condition exclusions” that health insurers have long used to deny coverage to those who need it most. But, she said, there’s a problem.

Businesses challenge smoking ban

1 | Jun. 22, 2010 | Government, Legislature, Tobacco

Several businesses have joined a lawsuit against the state, asserting that the statewide public smoking ban that becomes effective July 1 is unconstitutional.

Shannon Cotsoradis takes helm at children's group

0 | Jun. 29, 2010 | Advocacy

Shannon Cotsoradis, executive vice president at Kansas Action for Children, has been tapped to replace Gary Brunk as the advocacy group's chief executive. Brunk will continue to work on special projects and federal issues for the group he headed for 14 years.

KDHE surveyors sent to Osawatomie State Hospital

2 | 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.

Governor launches first of three childhood-poverty forums

1 | Nov. 14, 2011 | Children, Social Determinants of Health

Reducing the number of children born to single mothers is the most effective way to combat childhood poverty. That's according to Robert Rector, the Heritage Foundation fellow picked by Gov. Sam Brownback to keynote the first of his administration's three planned meetings this week on the topic of childhood poverty. Rector's remarks angered some in the audience of about 250 people.

KanCare initiative concerns parents of developmentally disabled adults

3 | Oct. 20, 2014 | KDADS, KanCare

A health home initiative announced by KDADS encourages but does not require KanCare companies to let developmentally disabled Kansans keep their current case managers if they so choose.

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.

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.

Few adults taking advantage of new KanCare dental coverage

1 | Oct. 24, 2014 | KanCare, Oral Health

When the state handed over administration of Medicaid to three managed care companies, the companies granted basic dental services to more than 130,000 adults who hadn't previously had it under Medicaid. But relatively few of those adults took advantage of it in KanCare's first year.

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