With the holiday season often comes an increase in the number of flu cases across Kentucky. Over the last week state officials report rates of the flu virus jumped from 'sporadic' to a 'regional' designation.
State Epidemiologist Kraig Humbaugh says getting a flu shot remains the primary recommendation. "Each flu season unfortunately, thousands of Americans die from flu or flu-related complications and the flu shot is folks best protection against influenza," said Humbaugh.
The University of Kentucky Hospital this week unveiled a brand new cardiovascular inpatient unit. Patients will move in to the new addition this weekend.
UK officials say the 64 bed inpatient unit is one of the largest cardiovascular intensive care facilities in the country. It features a combination of the latest medical technologies as well as lots of windows to the outside world. Officials say it's that view which can help the recovery process.
Strong winds Monday wreaked havoc on power lines across many sections of Kentucky. An official with Kentucky Utilities says the central portion of the state seems to have borne the brunt of the blustery conditions.
Monday is National Premature Awareness Day in the United States. University of Kentucky Neonatologist Doctor Hubert Ballard says he is seeing an increase in the Commonwealth in the number of infants born prematurely.
A University of Kentucky pediatric pharmacist is applauding attention given this week to health concerns associated with laundry detergent pods. Findings are being released following a two-year study conducted by researchers with Ohio's Nationwide Children's Hospital. According to the review, between 2012 and 2013, more than 17,000 children in America under the age of six were exposed to detergent pods.
Governor Beshear Announces Lung Cancer Collaboration in the Capitol Rotunda
Credit Stu Johnson / WEKU News
Studies show Kentucky has more cases of lung cancer than any other state and the number of lung cancer related deaths in the Commonwealth is almost 50 percent higher than the national average.
A $7 million grant announced Wednesday is expected to help reduce Kentucky's lung cancer mortality rate. The program is called Kentucky LEADS- Lung Cancer. Education, Awareness. Detection. Survivorship.
Three Year Old Dalton Baker on G-EO at Cardinal Hill Hospital
Credit Stu Johnson / WEKU News
Cardinal Hill Hospital in Lexington is officially unveiling its newest piece of rehabilitation equipment. It's called G-EO and hospital officials say Cardinal Hill is only the second rehab facility in the U.S. to offer the technology. The G-EO is a robotic gait training system. Dr.
In the months ahead, Kentucky families who lose loved ones should be able to attain death certificates sooner. In January, the state is moving to an all-electronic death reporting system. Paul Royce, who heads Vital Statistics, says e-filing can speed up the death certificate acquisition from about a month to two weeks or so. "When you lose a member of your family, you've got to have a copy of that certified death certificate in order to settle most estates, enroll in benefit plans, entitlement plans, cash insurance policies. You know, those types of things," said Royce.
It's been half a century since the first organ transplant operation was performed in the commonwealth. The University of Kentucky last week commemorated the milestone during the 50th Anniversary Transplant Symposium.
After a five year hiatus, Lexington's Safety City is back in business. The program aims to educate elementary school children about motor, personal, and social media safety.
For almost 20 years, Safety City offered youngsters instruction on a variety of issues. The facility, located at Red Mile Place, shut down in 2009 due to budget constraints. Children from Mary Todd Elementary and local officials gathered to celebrate a new day at Safety City.
A dozen years in the making, ground has been broken in Lexington on a new senior citizens center. Monday's ceremony at the Idle Hour Park site attracted a standing room only crowd, mostly senior citizens.
Even a small amount of used oil or insecticide can harm land and waterways. In an effort to drive residents to properly dispose of such chemicals, Lexington is again holding a 'Fall Haul." The event is planned for Saturday, October 18th at the city's former landfill site on Old Frankfort Pike.
Jesse Adams, Governor of Kentucky Chapter of American College of Cardiology
Surgeons, nurses, technicians, and pharmacists focusing on heart ailments are gathering in Louisville this weekend. It's the annual scientific meeting for the Kentucky Chapter of the American College of Cardiology. Chapter Governor Doctor Jesse Adams says heart valve disease will get additional attention this weekend.
For a time, Adams says heart surgery was the only remedy. "There's now the opportunity to go in with catheters and put a new valve in through that catheter. It's still a big operation or big procedure, but it's not a surgical operation," said Adams.
A central Kentucky county is receiving additional resources to fight illegal drug trafficking at the distribution level. Madison County is now a part of the Appalachian High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area. The announcement came Thursday in Richmond. HIDTA Director Frank Rapier says the additional federal money helps cut off illegal drugs coming from areas like Detroit and Atlanta. "The big thing is the partnership it brings to all the other HIDTA federal, state, and local working together. That's huge for us and sharing the intelligence from that," said Rapier.
A Lexington city council committee has unanimously approved adding electronic cigarettes to the existing indoor smoking ban. Carol Riker with the University of Kentucky College of Nursing told council Tuesday that e-cigarette aerosols contain toxic gases and tiny particles.
Vice Mayor Linda Gorton brought the issue to the committee. "It's a matter of not making it illegal to sell or buy or use the e-cigarettes, it's just don't use them inside where everybody else breathes the air," said Gorton.
State and local health officials met Monday with emergency management representatives to discuss Ebola prevention and response strategies.
More than 40 people representing a dozen agencies gathered in Lexington to consider any modifications in preparedness. Craig Humbaugh is a state epidemiologist. "We have a surge plan for these kinds of activities. We haven't done it at this stage but we might have to activate our continuity planning if we needed to," said Humbaugh.
Kentucky public health officials are working to reduce obesity within the state's youngest children. The obesity prevention program is focusing on children in pre-school, head start, or child care centers. The call to action includes staff training, family engagement, and making sure policies are aligned with best practices for diet and exercise. Elaine Russell is Obesity Prevention Program Coordinator in the Department for Public Health. "We know that one in five children are overweight or obese before they enter kindergarten. So, that means we're sending the schools the obesity epid
UK Freshman Issac Orteez took a pie in the face at the suicide prevention challenge Tuesday
Credit Stu Johnson / Weku News
A lighthearted approach to a serious issue attracted attention Tuesday at the University of Kentucky Student Center. Students there participated in the "a pie in the face challenge' for suicide prevention.
Messages written in chalk on the sidewalk leading into UK's Student Center included facts and figures about suicide. On the center patio, whipped cream pies were smashed into students' faces as part of a suicide prevention challenge, similar to the popular ALS ice bucket challenge. Indianapolis freshman Issac Orteez took a pie in the face.
Four University of Kentucky football players are facing a one game suspension for their role in a weekend gun incident on UK's campus. Surveillance cameras helped authorities identify the responsible parties.
According to university police, freshman UK football players Dorian Baker, Drew Barker, Tymere Dubose, and Stanley Williams are responsible for a Sunday evening incident on campus involving air soft pistols. Police say they received calls about gun shots near the Kirwan Blanding housing area. UK Students were advised to stay sheltered for about two hours.
In their effort to crack down on arsonists, state forestry officials are calling upon the services of bloodhounds. The new initiative is a joint project from the Division of Forestry, Kentucky State Police, and the Bell County Forestry Camp.