Bryan Thompson / Heartland Health Monitor

Few people associate hospitals with fine dining--hence the term “hospital food.” But a group of Kansas hospitals is out to change that.

Not only are they working to make the food they serve to patients, staff and visitors better, they’re working to make it healthier. Heartland Health Monitor’s Bryan Thompson traveled to northwest Kansas to visit one of the hospitals involved in the effort.

Bryan Thompson

A lot of the hospitals in rural Kansas are called “Critical Access Hospitals.” It’s an important designation, because Critical Access Hospitals were created by the federal government to maintain access to health care in rural areas. But as Heartland Health Monitor’s Bryan Thompson reports, several factors are making it harder for those hospitals to survive.

Bryan Thompson

There are a lot of small, rural hospitals in Kansas. Without them, many residents would have to travel long distances for care. And in many small towns, the hospital is one of the largest employers - making it vital to the local economy. But declining populations, combined with changes in the way hospitals are paid for services, are making it more difficult for many to survive. Heartland Health Monitor's Bryan Thompson has more.

Budget Item Would Assist Kan. Hospitals

Mar 27, 2013

Hospitals in Kansas could lose some federal money if the state doesn't expand Medicaid services under the federal health care law. A lawmaker helping to draft the budget says the state needs to consider assisting those hospitals.

Many hospitals receive payments to help them cover the cost of medical care for the uninsured; they are known as disproportionate shared hospital payments. As the federal health care law continues, the focus will move to funding more Medicaid services, meaning the current disproportionate share funds could be reduced or completely eliminated. 

A first round approval was given to a bill that would help support the state pension system; Kansas Senate to vote on gun-rights bill; Man charged in Koch cyber attack.

State Pension Plan Advances In House

Kansas House members have given first-round approval to a bill authorizing $1.5 billion in bonds.

The money will boost the financial state of the state pension system for teachers and government workers.