Health and Welfare

3:08am

Wed March 25, 2015
Health and Welfare

General Assembly Gives Final Approval to Booster Seat Changes

Credit the messenger.com

Kentucky's vehicle booster seat law is getting an upgrade.  Final approval came last night at the state Capital.  The measure increases the height restriction to include any child under 57 inches and applies to children under age eight.  Louisville Representative Steve Riggs says the new standards will protect more children.  "Several hundred accidents a year involving children and it will help make sure that the seat belt, the restraint is in the right place," said Riggs.

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4:17pm

Tue March 24, 2015
Health and Welfare

Ignition Interlock Measure Up for Vote on Final Day of Session

Credit rcnky

Northern Kentucky Representative Dennis Keene has been working for six years to help pass an ignition interlock bill and now passage appears closer than ever. The modified bill needs to see action Tuesday, if it's to clear during this session.  Keene almost lost his daughter to a drunk driver.  "It's not everything that we wanted in the House, but it's definitely gonna save lives and that's what's important,” said Keene. “It doesn't matter who's name's on it.  It just matters that it accomplishes and saves families anguish of losing their children."

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6:00am

Mon March 23, 2015
Health and Welfare

Highway Fatalities in Work Zones Falling, but Crashes Have Increased

Credit workzonesafety.org

    

As temperatures begin to climb this spring, the number of highway work crews on Kentucky's roads will also increase.  Proper attention to the road remains the key to safe travels.

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4:57pm

Mon March 16, 2015
Health and Welfare

Health Dept Official: Most Restaurant Operators Understand Value of Good Inspection Score

Credit lexingtonhealthdepartment.org

This is Environmental Health Professionals Week in Kentucky. Fayette County Health Department inspectors review some 1,700 permitted establishments each year.  Environmental Health Specialist Amy Sullivan says about 60 percent of the health department's reviews occur at restaurants.  She says several are shut down every year.  "Each year there are numerous establishments that do have to be closed for various reasons, whether it's not electricity or not have water," said Sullivan.  "Often times we get reports of a sewage back up in the food preparation area." 

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4:37pm

Tue March 10, 2015
Health and Welfare

Kentucky Legislature Agrees to Screen Newborns for Krabbe

Credit wikipedia.org

Babies born in Kentucky would undergo a new medical screening under legislation approved in both houses of the state legislature.  The full House yesterday unanimously approved the measure to begin testing newborns for Krabbe disease.

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9:47pm

Thu March 5, 2015
Health and Welfare

Street Crews Tackle Historic Snowfall in Lexington

Credit Stu Johnson / WEKU News

    

What's traditionally considered the tail end of the winter season has packed quite a punch for many sections of Kentucky.  Lexington residents are weathering a historic snow event.

Mid February brought double digit snowfall to the Bluegrass . Now, less than three weeks later, central Kentucky has been walloped again.  Lexington Mayor Jim Gray on Thursday  gave a briefing on the city's response.  "We fought off a 17 inch historic snowstorm with good planning and hard work," said Gray.

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12:33pm

Thu March 5, 2015
Health and Welfare

Blanket of Snow Causing Major Road Issues

Credit Stu Johnson / WEKU News

Snowfall totals varied widely across Kentucky Thursday.  In some sections of the Commonwealth, records are expected to be broken.  But, other sections find only a few inches on the ground.  Jackson National Weather Service Meteorologist Kevin Sullivan says snow accumulation ranges from one to three inches in far southeastern Kentucky, to 20 plus in the central region.

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1:59pm

Wed March 4, 2015
Health and Welfare

Ky House Narrowly Approves Tanning Bed Prohibition for Minors

Credit kentucky.com

Minors across Kentucky would not be allowed to use tanning beds under a bill narrowly approved in the House Tuesday.  The measure, which has been previously considered, was passed 51 to 47.  Western Kentucky Senator David Watkins is the bill's sponsor.  "I don't think that there is a great desire for penalties,” said Watkins.  “What we strictly want to do is see a decrease in our children using tanning beds at an early age, so that we would see hopefully a decrease in skin cancers."

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5:21pm

Mon March 2, 2015
Health and Welfare

Pike County Workplaces Surveyed on Indoor Air Quality

Credit notobacco.wordpress.com

An indoor air quality study of an eastern Kentucky county shows significant differences between smoke free workplaces and exempted establishments.  Representatives of the Kentucky Center for Smoke-free Policy, and Pike County Health officials onMonday released the results of a survey of 15 businesses.  Nurse Carol Riker with the Kentucky Center says levels of fine particle air pollution are much higher in certain Pike County workplaces.  "We found that people in the areas that were not covered by a smoke free ordinance were approximately 6.3 times higher than workplaces that were covered b

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5:17pm

Mon March 2, 2015
Health and Welfare

East Kentucky Prepares for Big Rainfall Following Major Snowstorm

Credit facebook.com

Sizeable amounts of rainfall are expected this week in southeast Kentucky.  That possibility coupled with a continuing snow melt is causing flooding concerns.  Pete Geogerian is a meteorologist with the Jackson National Weather Service.  "We are looking at generally two to three inches of rain to fall across eastern Kentucky between Tuesday evening through early Thursday morning," said Geogerian.

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4:54pm

Thu February 26, 2015
Health and Welfare

State and Local Agencies Continue to Assist Eastern Kentuckians Without Water

Credit kentucky.com

State officials say progress is being made to get water to southeastern Kentucky families who are without. Emergency response officials have been distributing bottled water in the region following last week's big snowfall and subzero temperatures that damaged water lines and clogged river intakes.  

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3:13pm

Fri February 20, 2015
Health and Welfare

Sub Zero Temps Followed by Snow, Ice, Rain Keep Utilities Busy

Credit lge-ku.com

    

Thousands of Kentuckians woke up to bitterly cold homes Friday morning.  Circuit overloads knocked out power to households all across the Commonwealth.

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10:30pm

Wed February 18, 2015
Health and Welfare

Brutal Temperatures Invade the Bluegrass, Pose Safety Threat

Credit Stu Johnson / WEKU News

    The unseasonably cold temperatures in the Bluegrass this week are creating life threatening conditions.  Lexington officials continue to sound the alarm for safety strategies.

On Wednesday, for the third straight day, Lexington Mayor Jim Gray held a news briefing at city hall.  "This weather is dangerous and it is unusual for us,” said Gray. “This is not something we're used to."

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7:48pm

Wed February 18, 2015
Health and Welfare

Governor Beshear Says State Prepared for What Bitter Cold Brings

Credit kentucky.com

In many areas of the state, Kentuckians are dealing with a foot of snow and preparing for artic like conditions.  Governor Beshear says preparations for emergency response are in place.

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7:30pm

Wed February 18, 2015
Health and Welfare

Deep Freeze Could Cause an Increase in Home Pipe Problems

Credit bereadylexington.com

Water pipes around the home are always at risk of freezing during the Kentucky winter.  But, that risk is greatly increased this week with temperatures expected to reach 15 to 20 degrees below zero.  Kentucky Association of Master Contractors Director Tim House says home insulation standards in the Commonwealth require pipe protection for temperatures above zero.  "And the house is insulated.  Well, it's only insulated to a point.  You don't typically design the insulation of a home in Kentucky for Alaska weather," said House.

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10:30pm

Tue February 17, 2015
Health and Welfare

Lexington Snow Removal Crews Brace for Bitter Cold Conditions

Credit kentucky.com

    

Recovering from a major snow storm takes one step at a time, or one plowed road after another.

Lexington snow plow crews and area residents are digging out from this week's storm.  Most all of the snowfall readings in the region hover around double digits.  Lexington's main roads are mostly clear but many subdivisions remain difficult to navigate. 

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10:14pm

Tue February 17, 2015
Health and Welfare

Expected Record Cold This Week Poses Threat to Livestock

Credit glasgowdailytimes.com

The forecasted weather for the remainder of the week across most of Kentucky is not likely to be fit for man or beast.  University of Kentucky Agricultural Meteorologist Matt Dixon says the formula for a deep snow came with dryer conditions.  "We had snow ratios closer to 15 to one, 15 inches of snow to one inch of liquid equivalent," said Dixon. "Usually around here it's closer to 10 inches of snow to one inch of liquid equivalent." 

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11:06pm

Mon February 16, 2015
Health and Welfare

Biggest One Day Snowfall in 17 Years Hits the Bluegrass

Stu Johnson WEKU News

  

A big snowfall in the Bluegrass Region is not only taxing a number of government agencies, but it's also trying the patience of area citizens.  The pace of the falling snow on Monday created its own challenges.

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1:31pm

Mon February 16, 2015
Health and Welfare

Power Outages and Power Generators Could Come Into Play with Snow Storm

Credit Selectsafetysales.com

Significant snowfall across the state could result in power outages in communities east to west in the Commonwealth.  Kentucky Public Service Commission spokesman Andrew Melnykovych says it may not be nearly as critical as when there is major ice accumulation, but power interruption is still possible.  "Particularly if you are looking at situations where you've got like conifer type trees, pines and what not collect a lot of snow on their branches,” he said. “Certainly that’s potential for bringing some branches down on power lines and having some outages."

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3:30pm

Fri February 13, 2015
Health and Welfare

Deadline is Sunday to Avoid Penalty for Not Having Insurance

Credit getcovered-ky.org

A family of four in Kentucky earning more than $24,250 a year has until midnight Sunday to sign up for health insurance to avoid a federal tax penalty.

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5:41pm

Mon February 9, 2015
Health and Welfare

Safety Measures Urged Following Falls at Red River Gorge

Credit Cincinnati.com

    

Two weekend incidents at Red River Gorge in which a camper died and a hiker was injured are serving to reinforce the importance of safety in the popular scenic area. Experts and regular visitors say such tragic incidents are far from rare.

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12:31am

Fri February 6, 2015
Health and Welfare

Statewide Smoking Ban Easily Clears House Committee

Credit tristatehomepage.com

A statewide smoking ban bill has easily cleared the House Health and Welfare Committee.  The key sponsor of the bill, Susan Westrom, is confident it will clear the full House.

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4:53pm

Wed January 28, 2015
Health and Welfare

Homeless Count Underway in Kentucky

Credit cchousing.org

 Local agencies from across the Commonwealth are taking part in the state's annual homeless count. Current data show both good and bad news. 

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10:38pm

Tue January 27, 2015
Health and Welfare

Central Ky Drug Awareness Group Working to Keep Up with Illegal Drug Use Trends

Credit madisoncountyasap.com

A group of central Kentuckians is working to reduce drug addiction in their region. The Madison County Agency for Substance Abuse Policy sponsored a community forum on the issue last week in Richmond.  ASAP Board Chair Jerian Petry says a state trooper spoke to the group about trends in alcohol use.  "Inhaling it or breathing it in, instead of just drinking it,” said Petry. “There's also other avenues; kids are doing things like putting alcohol directly into their eyes to basically feel the sensation earlier." 

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4:32pm

Fri January 23, 2015
Health and Welfare

Kentucky Highway Fatalities Up in 2014

Credit kentuckystatepolice.org

Highway fatalities across Kentucky increased in 2014 following a record low year in 2013.  Kentucky Office of Highway Safety preliminary figures indicate 667 people lost their lives on Kentucky roadways last year, up 29 from the previous year.  KOHS Director Bill Bell says gas prices ‘went through the floor’ and more people were on the road.  “On the initial look, that’s probably the main reason for the drastic increase we had in late November through the end of December,” said Bell.

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5:42pm

Wed January 21, 2015
Health and Welfare

Lexington Addressing Mental Health Issues in Diversion Court

Credit kyforward.com

Lexington's new 'mental health court' aims to help offenders get needed treatment and save taxpayer dollars.  The goal is to keep those convicted of misdemeanors from becoming felony offenders.

Kelley Gunning with the National Alliance on Mental Illness Lexington says there are currently eight people enrolled in the program.  "They have to have a mental health diagnosis, be willing to engage in treatment, and be willing to engage in whatever kind of mandate the court puts on them to remain out of trouble," said Gunning.

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6:00am

Tue January 20, 2015
Health and Welfare

Lexington Company Working on Device to Improve Oral Health in KY

Credit medcitynews.com

Researchers at Innovative Diagnostics are working on a device that uses saliva to better determine oral health. 

The company is one of nine high tech firms in Kentucky named last week to split almost $3 million. The grants are part of the state's Small Business Innovation Research matching fund program. 

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5:50pm

Wed January 14, 2015
Health and Welfare

Police from 26 Central Kentucky Agencies Crossing Boundaries to Fight Crime

Credit Stu Johnson / WEKU News

    

Jurisdictional boundaries are a thing of the past for more than 20 central Kentucky law enforcement agencies.   The Bluegrass and Central Kentucky Unified Police Protection System was officially announced Wednesday.

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4:52pm

Tue January 13, 2015
Health and Welfare

New Brain Stimulator Called 'Game Changer' for Epileptic Patients

Credit Stu Johnson / WEKU News

An eastern Kentucky woman is the first patient in the state to receive a device designed to greatly reduce epileptic seizures. 

Lowmansville native Cheryl Castle received a responsive neurostimulator implant in her brain in mid-November at UK Healthcare. Castle has suffered from seizures for 18 years and once had 42 seizures in three hours. 

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11:45am

Fri January 9, 2015
Health and Welfare

State's Health Exchange Reports 114,000 Signups In Period

Credit Credit kycountynews.com

 Kentucky's health care exchange, kynect, has newly enrolled 3,000 people in health coverage the past three weeks, and the state says more than 114,000 Kentucky residents have enrolled or renewed plans since open enrollment began eight weeks ago.

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