health care

Jasleen Kaur / flickr Creative Commons

Much attention has been paid to how the Republican health care bill passed by the House last month would increase costs for people with preexisting conditions. But a former official with the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services says it would affect just about everyone dramatically.

Olathe native Tim Gronniger oversaw payment reform at CMS under the Obama administration. At a recent town hall sponsored by opponents of the AHCA plan, he said the House bill would cost 200,000 Kansans their coverage and raise costs for just about everyone else.

Subconsci Productions / flickr Creative Commons

Kansas is among the states with the highest number of adults who have pre-existing health conditions. Many of them could see higher health care costs if the bill to replace Obamacare is signed into law.

Jim McLean / Kansas News Service

The owner of St. Francis Health left no doubt it won’t continue to run the Topeka hospital for more than a few months.

The lingering question is whether anyone else will step in to keep it from closing.

Mike Slubowski, president and CEO of SCL Health, said in a news release Tuesday that he hopes to have a clear answer about the hospital’s future by the first week of May. SCL, formerly known as the Sisters of Charity of Leavenworth, is based in Denver.

Andy Marso / Kansas News Service

Dr. Saeedeh Salmanzadeh became a U.S. citizen at a naturalization ceremony in October 2015.

When the presiding official asked if any of the new citizens wanted to speak, she was one of the first to raise her hand.

By then Salmanzadeh had spent 15 years in America, after leaving her home in Iran where she was a doctor.

She had spent two years with no pay, studying for exams so she could practice in the United States.

Sam Zeff / Kansas News Service

One critical part of Gov. Sam Brownback’s budget-balancing plan is creation of a statewide health insurance pool that Kansas public school teachers would have to join.

Courtesy photo

Wichita's Via Christi Hospital St. Joseph is under construction.

St. Joseph is undergoing a $50 million renovation plan. The hospital, located in southeast Wichita, is converting its medical-surgical units to private patient rooms on the 5th, 6th and 7th floors.

This follows the renovation of their New Life Center, which now has large private delivery rooms.

Laurie Labarca, the hospital's president, says the plan also includes location changes for some of the mental health services.

America’s Health Rankings/United Health Foundation

Kansas was the only state where the obesity rate went up significantly in 2015, according to an annual report, and state officials are trying to figure out why and how to reverse the trend.

The state also lagged on vaccination rates and remained stuck in the middle on overall health, according to the America’s Health Rankings Report, which was released Thursday.

Subconsci Productions / flickr Creative Commons

Health care costs under the Affordable Care Act are up this year in Kansas—for some plans, it’s by nearly 50 percent. But many customers aren't expected to feel that impact.

A new analysis prepared for the Associated Press shows premiums will increase by as much as 46 percent.

healthcare.gov

Federal health officials say headlines about anticipated premium increases on the Obamacare health insurance marketplace overlook an important point: Most Americans, including two-thirds of Kansans, will still be able to find a plan with a premium of $75 a month, or less.

The effort to expand Medicaid in Kansas has been stuck in the political mud for the better part of three years.

Not anymore.

The results of last week’s primary election may have given expansion advocates the traction they need to overcome opposition from Republican Gov. Sam Brownback and legislative conservatives who thus far have blocked debate on the issue.

A series of victories by moderate Republicans over conservative incumbents and challengers for open seats has fundamentally changed the legislative landscape.

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