Kansas Department of Health and Environment

Officials: Do Not Swim In These 5 Kansas Lakes

Oct 11, 2013

Kansas health officials say five Kansas lakes have dangerous levels of toxic algae.

The Kansas Department of Health and Environment said Thursday high levels of toxic blue-green algae have been detected at the following lakes:

If the shutdown of the federal government continues longer than two more weeks, 70,000 young mothers, babies and preschoolers in Kansas stand to lose access to some of the food they rely on.

KDHE has ordered local WIC offices to withhold checks for November and December until federal funding is assured. WIC checks are normally issued for three months at a time.

Dave Thomason, who heads the federally-funded Women Infants and Children supplemental food program in Kansas, says withholding checks dated later than October is a precautionary response to the federal shutdown.

Court Reverses Permit For New Kansas Coal Plant

Oct 7, 2013

The Kansas Supreme Court has reversed a state agency's decision to issue a permit to construct a new coal-fired power plant in southwest Kansas.

Friday's unanimous decision by the justices is a setback for Sunflower Electric Power Corporation in its plans to build a second plant near Holcomb.

The justices ruled that the Kansas Department of Health and Environment failed to account for new emission standards from the federal Environmental Protection Agency that were in place at the time the permit was issued.

A new research brief by the Kansas Department of Health and Environment shows a slight increase in the infant mortality rate last year.

Infant mortality refers to babies who die before their first birthday.

Although the trend has been downward, Kansas has exceeded the national infant mortality rate every year since 2003.

West Nile Back In Kansas

Aug 12, 2013

The Kansas Department of Health and Environment says an adult from Atchison County has the state's first case of West Nile virus this year.

KDHE says on its website that a mosquito sample in Sedgwick County has also tested positive for West Nile, a virus that can be spread to people through bites from infected mosquitoes, but is not contagious from person to person. Symptoms include headaches and low-grade fever to swelling of the brain.

West Nile virus cases are most common in the late summer and early fall months.

KanCare beneficiaries can expect to receive an important mailing in the next few days.

The Affordable Care Act makes some changes that will require them to provide additional information about their households. The mailing is going out to 130,000 households that include children and pregnant women who are KanCare, formerly known as Medicaid, beneficiaries.

8 Lakes In Kansas You Need To Be Warned About

Jul 22, 2013

Swimming, skiing and other direct water contact is banned at six Kansas lakes because of toxic blue-green algae.

The Kansas Department of Health and Environment says the lakes are:

Schools Receive $83,000 For Recycling Projects

May 2, 2013

The Kansas Department of Health and Environment has awarded grants totaling nearly $83,000 to 27 of the state's public schools for recycling-related projects.

The department the grants were awarded for the next school year and will help pay for recycling bins, composting programs, programs for handling cafeteria waste and field trips to recycling centers. Schools from across the state won grants from $750 t0 $4500.

Nearby schools that won grants include:

Brownback Says State’s Low Public Health Preparedness Ranking Too Harsh

Jan 3, 2013

Gov. Sam Brownback and others in his administration are challenging a recent national report that ranked Kansas low for public health preparedness.

The critical report was issued by the non-profit Trust for America's Health. In it, Kansas and Montana tied for last place in rankings of public health preparedness. That means the state isn't as prepared as others to respond to public health threats, such as infectious diseases, food-borne illnesses, bio-terrorism, even extreme weather events.

Public Health Preparedness Lags In Kansas

Dec 19, 2012

A new report on the nation's public health preparedness finds Kansas tied with Montana for last place.

The report from the non-profit Trust For America’s Health is based on 10 measures of readiness for a public health emergency, such as bioterror, extreme weather, and disease outbreaks. Kansas met only three of the ten standards.

This comes on the heels of another report about a month ago from the charitable group, Save The Children. It found that Kansas failed to meet all four of their measures of preparedness for disasters affecting children.

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