Health and Welfare

12:27pm

Wed May 29, 2013
Health and Welfare

Study suggests noisy operating rooms distract surgeons, nurses

A hospital’s operating room can be a noisy, distracting workplace.  There’s the hum of equipment, tones, beeps and conversations, that can all interfere with good communication. A University of Kentucky study looked into the kinds of sounds most often heard in the O-R.

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12:14pm

Wed May 29, 2013
Health and Welfare

Kentucky near bottom in senior citizen health

Kentucky ranks 45th out of 50 states when it comes to the health of senior citizens, according to a report issued by the non-profit United Health Foundation. Among all 50 states, Minnesota leads the nation for senior health, followed by Vermont, New Hampshire, Massachusetts and Iowa. Mississippi ranks 50th, preceded by Oklahoma, Louisiana, West Virginia, Arkansas and Kentucky. Read more...

6:53am

Tue May 28, 2013
Health and Welfare

New Home for Diabetes Education Program

Credit Madison County Health Department

A diabetes education program offered at the Madison County Health Department is moving to Baptist Health Richmond Hospital.   For seven years, the Health Department has been home to the Diabetes Center of Excellence Program.  It’s a casualty of state budget cuts.  But, Madison Health Department Spokeswoman Christie Green says the Richmond hospital is picking up the service.

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5:58am

Tue May 28, 2013
Health and Welfare

Advertising Kentucky's Health Exchange

Credit WKMS

Despite an ongoing lawsuit challenging its existence, the Kentucky Health Insurance exchange will start a new advertising campaign next month. The exchange will work like an online marketplace.  Several different insurers will offer various plans.  It will include Medicaid and Medicare.

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5:06pm

Thu May 23, 2013
Health and Welfare

Police Training for Pedestrian and Cyclist Crashes

Credit Louisville Metro Government

As summer approaches, more and more Kentuckians are likely to be out biking and walking.  The latest law enforcement techniques for investigating pedestrian and cyclist incidents are being stressed to officers.  A group of state and local police spent this week learning how best to conduct investigations involving vehicles and bicyclists or walkers.  K-S-P Sargent Chad Mills is with collision analysis in the highway safety branch.  Mills says motorcycle related crashes have been on the increase in recent years.  He says motorists need to have even a keener sense when it comes to bike traffic.

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4:08pm

Wed May 22, 2013
Health and Welfare

Farm Tractors and Cars Getting Along

Credit www.kentuckynewera.com

Kentucky’s economy remains steeped in agriculture related professions.  Sometimes the rural way of life intersects with an urban traveler.  Farmers across Kentucky are trying their best to get equipment into the fields.  Sometimes, it requires a trip down a roadway.  Triple A reports in 2012 there were 192 collisions in Kentucky involving farm equipment.  Bluegrass Triple A Spokesman Christopher Oakford says slow moving tractors have a legal right to use the roads.

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12:22pm

Tue May 21, 2013
Health and Welfare

Bluegrass Red Cross Vehicle Heading to Oklahoma

Two Central Kentucky Red Cross volunteers are heading out today to Oklahoma to assist in tornado relief work.   Recovery efforts are continuing today in the town of Moore where many of the casualties are children.  Red Cross Spokesman Winn Stephens says the two volunteers are taking a Red Cross emergency response vehicle to the tornado site.  Russ Hoff of Lexington and Ramona Hibbard of Manchester are traveling to Oklahoma with the Red Cross vehicle.  Stephens says the two are expected to be there for ten days to two weeks.

5:26pm

Mon May 20, 2013
Health and Welfare

State Police on Lower Blood Alcohol Limit

Sargent Rick Saint Blancard Kentucky State Police Public Affairs
Credit Kentucky State Police

State police again promise have patrols on Kentucky’s highways this holiday weekend, and, as always, they’ll be watchful for drunk drivers.  And, there’s a move afoot that tightens restrictions on drivers who also drink.

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4:03pm

Mon May 20, 2013
Health and Welfare

Kentucky Care for Foster Children Diverse

Commissioner Teresa James
Credit State Department for Community Based Services

The numbers tell part of the story.  71-hundred children need foster homes but there are only four-thousand such residences in Kentucky.  And, State Department for Community Based Services Commissioner Teresa James says some of those foster parents hope to adopt a child...and then leave the system.  “We have some of our homes are actually considered foster to adopt.  These are individuals who want to be foster parents, but are saying to us when they come in ‘we might also be interested in adoption, if children have had their, if their parental rights have been terminated and children are free for adoption,” said James.

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10:08am

Sun May 19, 2013
Health and Welfare

Tea Party Activist Sues over Medicaid Expansion

David Adams of Nicholasville is a Tea Party activist.
Credit Lexington Herald Leader

Tea party activist David Adams is again suing Gov. Steve Beshear. This time it's over the Affordable Care Act, also called Obamacare. The lawsuit aims at stopping Beshear from expanding Medicaid in Kentucky.

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10:02am

Sun May 19, 2013
Health and Welfare

Land deal for HealthFirst clinic raises questions

Though original plans were to renovate this structure, HealthFirst now intends to raze the building and replace it.
Credit Lexington Herald-Leader

Most agree a $11.7 million public health clinic that could help thousands of poor people get medical and dental treatment would be positive for Lexington. But opinions vary dramatically about benefits of the land deal between developer Ted J. Mims and HealthFirst Bluegrass to locate the clinic at 496 Southland Drive. The project is the focus of an audit announced Tuesday by Lexington Mayor Jim Gray and state Auditor Adam Edelen. They cited concern over $250,000 in fees and rent that have been paid by HealthFirst for the clinic with few tangible results. Read more...

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2:08pm

Fri May 17, 2013
Health and Welfare

Old Clark hospital dismantled 'piece by piece'

The dismantling of the old Clark Regional Medical Center has begun, and should take about six months, according to Jen Algire, CEO of the Clark Regional Foundation for the Promotion of Health. “The building’s basically going to be dismantled piece by piece,” Algire said.  Read more...

10:33am

Thu May 16, 2013
Health and Welfare

Hepatitis B cases Increase

Northern Kentucky Health Department is offering vaccines to people at high risk for hepatitis B as the region fights a rise in diagnoses of the disease. Those who qualify will receive a series of three vaccines over six months at a low cost, thanks to a Kentucky Department for Public Health grant, said Joyce Rice, epidemiology manager for the NKY Health Department.  Read more...

10:22am

Thu May 16, 2013
Health and Welfare

Investigation of Jefferson County social services concluding

An internal investigation into one of Kentucky's largest regional child protection and social services office should conclude in coming weeks, said Cabinet for Health and Family Services Secretary Audrey Tayse Haynes. Haynes told the Lexington Herald-Leader editorial board last week that she asked the cabinet's Office of Inspector General to look at the Jefferson County Department for Community Based Services, which handles child and adult protection and other programs, such as food stamps.  Read more...

1:40pm

Wed May 15, 2013
Health and Welfare

Spelled K-Y-N-E-C-T, Pronounced "Connect"

Credit Kentucky Educational Television

Kentucky's new exchange for people on the market for healthcare now has a name and  a website.  It'll be called Kynect—pronounced "connect." People can access it at kynect.ky.gov. A phone line will be running in August. Kynect will be fully operational in time for October open health insurance enrollment.Once running, Kynect will help Kentucky residents or employers find and compare prices for health insurance coverage. It's part of the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare.

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11:50am

Tue May 14, 2013
Health and Welfare

Child-protection panel studies Toddler's Death

More could have been done to prevent the death of 2-year-old Watson Adkins, said members of a panel reviewing deaths from child abuse in Kentucky. Watson, who was removed from his home and placed with a maternal aunt, was later found dead at his aunt and uncle's home in Floyd County in September 2011. Gladys and Jason Dickerson have been charged in his death and are scheduled for trial in August. Read more...

2:15pm

Mon May 13, 2013
Health and Welfare

Medicaid expansion could change Kentucky's course, big time

"Today we change the course of Kentucky's history." It is not often that a public official can say such a thing with a large measure of credibility, but Gov. Steve Beshear legitimately raised that hope Thursday, as he announced that he would expand Kentucky's Medicaid program under federal health reform. If Beshear's vision is fulfilled, Kentucky will no longer have one of the unhealthiest populations of any state, a change that will make it more attractive to employers, and any Kentuckian who wants health insurance will be able to get it.

11:46am

Fri May 10, 2013
Health and Welfare

Data Shows Cost of Care Varies at Lexington Hospitals

St. Joseph East Hospital
Credit Pablo Alacala/Lexington Herald-Leader

Costs for various types of major medical care at Lexington hospitals — including treatment for heart attack, joint replacement and kidney failure — varied wildly in data provided by the federal government this week. The numbers, released by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, gave American consumers their first look inside the pricing structures of hospital stays, figures often seen for the first time when a bill arrives. Lexington hospital officials said that consumers should approach such figures warily because of the complexity of the pricing models and the fact that consumers do not pay "sticker price" for their medical procedures.

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2:26pm

Thu May 9, 2013
Health and Welfare

Kentucky Businesses Prep for Healthcare Reforms

Kentucky businesses, both large and small, are running out of time to prepare for new federal health care regulations.  In just over seven months, the so called ‘pay or play’ provision kicks in.  Starting next year, employers with more than 50 workers are required to provide health insurance coverage or risk penalties.  Kentucky health care lawyer Vicki Yates Brown says such a policy may not result in immediate employee reductions.  But, she says it could impact future hiring.

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10:15am

Wed May 1, 2013
Health and Welfare

Data Shows More Than 5,000 Childrens' Products Contain Toxic Chemicals

New data from popular toy and children’s clothing manufacturers submitted to Washington State shows that more than 5,000 of them contain traces of at least one toxic chemical. These products are sold by national manufacturers that also operate in Kentucky.

11:39am

Tue April 30, 2013
Health and Welfare

One of Kentucky's Largest Mental Health Agencies Files for Bankruptcy

The decision of Seven Counties Services Inc. to file bankruptcy to avoid paying into the Kentucky Employee Retirement System has created a "no win" situation for the state, and the issue may add yet another obstacle for Kentuckians to get the mental health care they need.

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5:22pm

Fri April 26, 2013
Health and Welfare

West Virginia Pushes for Breakfast Programs in Schools to Improve Health

Breakfast has been said to be the most important meal of the day, and it can be important in fighting obesity. Policymakers in West Virginia are pushing for breakfast food programs in schools through public-private partnerships, and a new report says similar programs could save $41 billion in federal dollars long-term by preventing obesity. Does this make sense, and does it make sense for Kentucky?

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5:18pm

Fri April 26, 2013
Health and Welfare

April 27th is National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day

Dump your unwanted prescription drugs this Saturday, April 27, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. as part of the National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day, which in the past has coordinated with local law enforcement to haul in more than than 2 million pounds or 1,018 tons of prescription medications.

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11:03am

Fri April 26, 2013
Health and Welfare

Poll Says Kentucky is the Third Most Stressed-Out State

Misery loves company, after all. Kentuckians are the third most stressed out people in the U.S., trailing only West Virginians and Rhode Islanders, says a new poll from Gallup. In 2012, 44.8 percent of Kentuckians told Gallup that they'd experienced stress the previous day. Kentuckians also are the second least likely to experience enjoyment. Rhode Island topped that list.

4:16pm

Thu April 18, 2013
Health and Welfare

Senator Baucus Voices Concerns Over Health-Care Reform Implementation

Credit Map provided by the Kaiser Family Foundation

Senator Max Baucus, who as Senate Finance Committee chair helped write the health-care reform law, has become the highest-ranking Democrat to publicly voice concerns about its implementation, saying he thinks it’s headed for a collision with itself. “I just see a huge train wreck coming down,” the Montanan told Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius during a budget hearing.

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5:35pm

Wed April 17, 2013
Health and Welfare

FDA to Block Generic Versions of OxyContin to Deter Abuse

Credit Creative Commons

The Food and Drug Administration announced Tuesday that it would block generic, crushable versions of OxyContin from coming to the market and approve the reformulated, non-crushable OxyContin, which deters abuse of the powerful painkiller.

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2:28pm

Tue April 16, 2013
Health and Welfare

Drug-Resistant Bacteria are Becoming More Common in Kentucky Hospitals

Credit Creative Commons

Nightmarish, drug-resistant bacteria that cause deadly infections are becoming more common in Kentucky hospitals, and a leading legislator on health issues says they should be required to report each case. The state Department for Public Health and hospital officials are investigating the presence of carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae, or CRE, at Kindred Hospital Louisville, a long-term and transitional care facility.

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12:21pm

Mon April 15, 2013
Health and Welfare

Brain Training in Danville

Exercising your mind can help in coping with the stress at the workplace and at school.   A pair of consultants in central Kentucky say ‘brain training’ techniques can help.  A lack of sleep, little exercise, and poor diet can all negatively impact memory.  But, an education consultant believes people can slow their mental decline. Carol Brown and her husband provide private tutoring services to students and professional.  Brown with the for-profit Academic Success Center of Kentucky, says games can help.

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10:45am

Sun April 14, 2013
Health and Welfare

House Bill 1 Slices Prescription Numbers

Credit Creative Commons

Prescribed doses of opiate pain medication have dropped significantly since Kentucky House Bill 1 went into effect last summer. Lawmakers passed the bill during the 2012 legislative session in response to Kentucky’s prescription pill problem, which was blamed for about 80 drug overdose deaths a month.

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1:38pm

Thu April 11, 2013
Health and Welfare

Poll Shows Health Care Costs are a Burden for Many Kentuckians

Credit Creative Commons

A recent statewide survey shows health-care costs are a burden for many Kentuckians, especially for those who are poor and don't have insurance and put off getting care they need because they can't afford it. More than 60 percent of Kentucky adults in the poll said high costs forced them or a family member living in their home to delay getting care in the past year. Not surprisingly, almost 90 percent of uninsured respondents reported going completely without care in the past year.

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