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Dave Ranney, Senior Writer/Editor, is a journalist who has covered state government for the Harris News Service, the Wichita Eagle and, most recently, the Lawrence Journal-World. He has a special interest in social services. Ranney received the Burton W. Marvin Kansas News Enterprise Award in 2000. The award recognizes outstanding reporting by a Kansas newspaper. Ranney, who holds a bachelor’s degree in sociology, worked with adults with developmental disabilities for eight years before becoming a reporter.
State officials are expecting a $5.8 million payback from a managed care firm whose chief financial officer was jailed for defrauding the state’s Medicaid program. The settlement is expected to generate approximately, $4.9 million for the Kansas Department for Aging and Disability Services, and $900,000 for the Kansas Department for Health and Environment, according to agency spokespersons
More that 300 mental health advocates - a mix of mental health consumers, family members, advocates, and service providers - are expected to attend this year's Mental Health Advocacy Day.
Parents of autistic children told legislators Monday that they were opposed to a bill proposed by the insurance industry because it could limit the amount of behavioral therapy that insurers would cover for those on their health plans.
The Senate Public Health and Welfare Committee today passed a bill to require Affordable Care Act health insurance navigators to undergo background checks, be fingerprinted, and pay an annual $100 registration fee. But opponents of the measure said a similar law passed in Missouri was struck down by a federal judge.
The Senate Judiciary Committee on Wednesday endorsed legislation that would give foster parents more information about the children in their care. “This is definitely a good start, it’s a step in the right direction,” said Barbara Allen, a former state senator who testified in support of Senate Bill 394, which some have called the “foster parent bill of rights.”
A state senator questioned why the Kansas Attorney General supports a lawsuit challenging provisions in the Affordable Care Act that require company health insurance plans to cover contraceptives. The lawsuit, filed by Hobby Lobby, will be argued before the U.S. Supreme Court later this month. Kansas is one of the 18 states where attorneys general have filed briefs in support of the national retailer.
Kansans without health insurance have until March 31 to enroll in one of the coverage plans available through the Affordable Care Act's marketplace. Those who don’t could be subject to a penalty on their 2014 federal income taxes.
Missouri law requires most health insurance plans to cover autism treatments for children, so a number of Kansas families have moved to the state but continue to get their autism services in Kansas. The Kansas Legislature has two bills before it that would alter state rules for covering autism. One has the support of parents of autistic children. The other is pushed by the state's leading health insurance companies, which have resisted expanding the coverage, saying it would boost the cost of premiums for everyone. A compromise measure apparently is in the works.
A poll commissioned by the advocacy arm of the American Cancer Society found that 72 percent of the state's likely voters favor expansion of the state's Medicaid program.
Former State Sen. Barbara Allen and other foster parents asked members of the Senate Judiciary Committee to approve a bill that would allow foster parents more voice in placement decisions and otherwise strengthen their roles in the child welfare system.