Take 5 For Your Health

A Quick, Clickable Roundup Of Health News From Our Region — And Beyond — For The Final Week Of 2016

Kansas City will review its progress in making its streets friendlier to bicyclists after a city audit reported deficiencies. (Photo: Steven Senne | AP)

Kansas City To Rethink Bike Plan Following Harsh Audit

Kansas City will reassess its approach to accommodating cyclists, City Manager Troy Schulte told the city council Thursday.

His announcement came in response to a new audit showing the city failing to achieve its goals of becoming more bike friendly.

Short Beats | Other Heartland Health Monitor Headlines

Osawatomie, Larned hospital Leaders Try New Strategies 

Changes Underway for Kansas Sexual Predator Program

KC Checkup: 6 Questions For Deborah Shouse About Connecting With Dementia Patients

Deborah Shouse

Kansas City writer Deborah Shouse says there are many ways for caregivers to connect to dementia patients through the expressive arts. (Photo: Dan Margolies | Heartland Health Monitor)

The audit concluded that the city’s on-street bike plan, Bike KC, lacks critical elements to serve the needs of cyclists and the city’s multi-modal transportation goals.

The failure to update the plan and follow the recommendations of a public committee have led to project delays and increased costs.

—Alex Smith is a reporter with KCUR, a partner in Heartland Health Monitor, a collaboration that also includes KCPT and KHI News Service, an editorially independent initiative of the Kansas Health Institute.

Report: Kansas And Missouri Get Middling Grades On Meeting Public Health Threats

A new report from the nonprofit Trust For America’s Health says Kansas meets six of 10 measures related to public health threats while Missouri meets five.

The “Ready or Not” report says Kansas and Nebraska are among 17 states, along with the District of Columbia, that meet six indicators. Missouri was among four states that meet only five.

One of the indicators checks whether states have increased — or at least maintained — their spending on public health. Twenty-six states met that standard from fiscal year 2014–2015 to fiscal year 2015–2016. Kansas and North Carolina were the only two states that cut their public health budgets three consecutive years.

—Bryan Thompson is a reporter for KHI News Service

Medical Imaging Company Owner Accused Of Defrauding Government Of $1.5 Million

The owner of a medical imaging company allegedly defrauded Medicare and Medicaid of more than $1.5 million, according to a criminal complaint filed Dec. 19 in Topeka.

Cody Lee West, 38, did business as C&S Imaging Inc., a mobile diagnostic testing facility based in Paragould, Arkansas. The facility provided ultrasound services to chiropractors and other medical providers in Kansas.

According to the complaint, West told chiropractors he would provide them with ultrasound equipment and a technician at no charge. The chiropractors would bill for the services.

—Dan Margolies is editor of Heartland Health Monitor

Investigation Finds High Lead Poisoning Rates In St. Joseph

More than 15 percent of children tested in seven census tracts in St. Joseph, Missouri, had elevated lead levels, according to an investigation by Reuters.

That was more than triple Missouri’s average of 5 percent, Reuters reported.

The news agency examined neighborhood-level blood testing results across the country, providing a detailed look at where efforts over decades to eradicate lead poisoning have fallen short.

Reuters said it found nearly 3,000 areas nationwide with lead poisoning rates at least double those found in Flint, Michigan, where children were exposed to lead in their drinking water. More than 1,100 areas had four times Flint’s rate of elevated lead levels.

The information was gathered from state health departments and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

—D.M.

From PBS NewsHour

Lung disease is a well-known deadly consequence of working in the coal industry. But a new NPR study finds miners are suffering from the most advanced form of the disease at a rate ten times higher than the government has reported. Hari Sreenivasan speaks with NPR’s Howard Berkes about the causes of this late-stage lung disease, possibilities for treatment and why it’s been direly underestimated.


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