STATE and LOCAL ISSUES

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News

Cassidy-Graham is like previous Affordable Care Act repeal bills. It will hurt Kansans., By Sandy Praeger, September 20, 2017

Senate’s latest healthcare reform attempt of concern to KASB, By Nick Gosnell, September 19, 2017

Kansas nursing home inspectors didn’t follow up on half of problems found, report says, By Andy Marso and Hunter Woodall, September 11, 2017

Obamacare Premiums Mixed For Kansas Consumers, While Missouri Rates Climb, By Jim McLean and Alex Smith, September 01, 2017

KDADS secretary Tim Keck pitches privatization of troubled Osawatomie hospital, By Allison Kite, August 30, 2017

Fact Meter: Kansas budget director’s chart offers misleading view of KanCare waiting list, By Tim Carpenter, August 28, 2017

Foster parents of children with disabilities face unique challenges under KanCare, lawmakers told, By Peter Hancock, August 23, 2017

Osawatomie State Hospital Back On Track For Recertification, Officials Say, By Jim McLean, August 16, 2017

Lawmakers vent frustration over lack of progress recertifying Osawatomie State Hospital, By Peter Hancock, August 03, 2017

Moran, Roberts Vote For ‘Skinny Repeal’ As McCain Casts Deciding Vote Against It, By Jim McLean, July 28, 2017

Kansas Senator Moran Votes To Trigger Debate On ACA Repeal Bill, By Jim McLean, July 25, 2017

U.S. senators expected to vote on health care debate, By Allison Kite, July 24, 2017

Big Tent Save Medicaid Rally and Press Conference!

Health Bill Could Reduce Medicaid Services For Children With Disabilities In Kansas Schools, By Celia Llopis-Jepsen, July 05, 2017

Salvation Army giving away fans Monday, By Phil Anderson, June 14, 2017

Lawmakers Approve Funding For Kansas Medicaid, Mental Health Centers; By Meg Wingerter, June 07, 2017

Kansas Crisis Centers Say New Law Creates Mental Health Funding Need, By Meg Wingerter, May 25, 2017

Federal Officials OK ‘Corrective Plan’ As Kansas Pursues KanCare Extension, By Meg Wingerter, May 24, 2017

Federal officials accept plan to fix Kansas Medicaid program, By Bryan Lowry, May 23, 2017

KanCare Renewal Public Meetings Scheduled, From the Kansas Department for Aging and Disability Services (KDADS), May 23, 2017

Topeka ADA Advisory Council Launches Survey to Gauge Communities Perception of Accessibility Services, From the City of Topeka’s ADA Advisory Council, May 22, 2017

Poll Shows Most Kansans Support Medicaid Expansion, But Is It Too Late For This Session?, By Meg Wingerter, May 08, 2017

KU Hospital And For-Profit Chain To Acquire Troubled Topeka Hospital, By Jim McLean, May 04, 2017

Sources: KU Health System and Ardent will take over St. Francis, By Morgan Chilson, May 04, 2017

Kansas Lawmakers Unlikely To Vote Again On Medicaid Expansion, Says GOP Leader, By Jim McLean, May 01, 2017

KanCare Expansion forum shares potential Barton County impact, By Veronica Coons, April 24, 2017

Medicaid expansion advocates push for more support in Legislature, By John Hanna and Allison Kite, April 22, 2017

Stormont approached by St. Francis to take over assets, By Morgan Chilson, April 18, 2017

Hundreds Rally Against Closure Of Topeka Hospital At Center Of Medicaid Expansion Debate, By Jim McLean, April 18, 2017

KanCare Expansion Advocates Gearing Up For Another Override Attempt, By Jim McLean and Meg Wingerter, April 07, 2017

Gov. Brownback signs ‘Joey’s Law,’ drug overdose bills; By Tim Carpenter, March 06, 2017

Kansas House fails to override Brownback veto of Medicaid, By Celia Llopis-Jepsen, April 03, 2017

Brownback Veto Sets Up Medicaid Expansion Battle With Legislature, By Meg Wingerter and Stephen Koranda, March 30, 2017

Brownback vetoes Medicaid expansion, saying it’s ‘bad for Kansas’, By Celia Llopis-Jepsen, March 30, 2017

KanCare Expansion Bill Now Just One Step Away, By Jim McLean, March 27, 2017

KanCare Expansion Bill Heads To Senate For Vote Next Week, By Jim McLean, March 23, 2017

Cost Of KanCare Expansion Debated Ahead Of Key Vote, By Jim McLean, March 22, 2017

Kansas Congressman Questions Need To Care For Poor, Touts High-Risk Pools, By Jim McLean, March 08, 2017

KDHE Seeks Comments on KanCare Extension, From KDHE, March 2017

Midsession Checkup: Which Health Bills Have A Shot In Kansas?, By Meg Wingerter, March 06, 2017

Twenty percent Kansas nursing homes on violation ’red-flag’ list, By Tim Carpenter, March 06, 2017

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Advocacy Organizations and Informational Resources

AARP Kansas is dedicated to enhancing quality of life for all as we age. We lead positive social change and deliver value to members through information, advocacy and service.

Assistive Technology for Kansans connects people with disabilities and health conditions of all ages with the assistive technology they need to learn, work, play and participate in community life safely and independently.

The Association of Community Mental Health Centers of Kansas Inc. advances the interest of CMHCs and the individuals they serve. The primary goal of CMHCs is to provide quality care, treatment and rehabilitation to individuals with mental health problems in the least restrictive environment. The CMHCs provide services to all those needing it, regardless of economic level, age or type of illness.

The Kansas Audio-Reader Network is a reading and information service for blind, visually impaired, and print disabled individuals in Kansas and western Missouri. Services are offered free of charge to anyone in our listening area who is unable to read normal printed material.

The Big Tent Coalition is a coalition of social service providers in Kansas.

Community Supports and Services (CSS) manages a system of community based supports and services for persons with disabilities. Those supports and services, are delivered in partnerships with organized networks and funded through a variety of federal, state, local, and private sources. Community service providers reflect a variety of private not-for-profit and for-profit organizations as well as governmental entities.

KDHE Division of Health Care Finance (formerly Kansas Health Policy Authority) is the principal health care agency for the state of Kansas. DHCF serves as the single state Medicaid agency in Kansas and is responsibel for administering the medical portion of the Kansas Medicaid program, as well as the state Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP, also known as "HealthWave"); MediKan, which provides coverage for certain low-income, disabled Kansans; the State Employee Health Program; and the State Self-Insurance Fund

Envision is a private, not-for-profit agency uniquely combining employment opportunities with rehabilitation services and public education. Our Mission To enhance the personal independence of individuals whose blindness or low vision, often accompanied by other disabilities, impacts their opportunities for employment, success, and integration into community life.

Kansas Donated Dental Services is a project initiated by the National Foundation for Dentistry for the Handicapped and the Kansas Dental Association. Its purpose is to provide free, comprehensive care for people who are permanently disabled, elderly and medically compromised who are unable to afford dental care. The Kansas dentists volunteering for DDS donate services in their own offices. Dental laboratories contribute services.

Families Together is the Parent Training and Information center serving Kansas families who include a son/daughter with disabilities. We train and inform parents and professionals, help families obtain appropriate education and services for their children with disabilities, work to improve education results for all children, resolve problems between families and schools or other agencies and connect children with disabilities to community resources that address their needs.

The Gallaudet University Regional Center at Johnson County Community College offers extension courses, training workshops and technical assistance to address the educational, transition, and professional development needs from birth through adulthood of deaf and hard of hearing people, their families and professionals who work with them.

Official website for the Governor of Kansas.

KanCare is the program through which the State of Kansas administers Medicaid. Kansas has contracted with three managed care organizations (MCOs), to coordinate health care for nearly all Medicaid beneficiaries. The KanCare health plans are Amerigroup of Kansas, Inc. (Amerigroup), Sunflower State Health Plan (Sunflower), and UnitedHealthcare Community Plan of Kansas (United).

Kansas.gov is the official website for the State of Kansas.

Kansas Action Network, Inc. or KAN, is a broad based coalition for workers' rights, social justice and economic fairness seeking a common ground in the pursuit of a just society. We call upon our common values in order to educate, organize and mobilize on issues that will improve the working and living conditions for all men, women, and children in Kansas.

The Kansas Assistive Technology Co-Operative (KATCO) provides Kansans with disabilities and their families access to financial resources for acquiring assistive technology. Families on fixed incomes, or who have credit problems related to disabilities, may qualify for loans. KATCO offers assistance with a combination of education, savings and low interest borrowing.

The Kansas Association of Centers for Independent Living (KACIL), represents 12 Centers for Independent Living (CILs). Centers provide services to people with disabilities of all ages. Centers for Independent Living also provide assistance to businesses and all other entities in the community to assist them in offering services to people with disabilities. We advocate at a state and national level for the rights of all people with disabilities to live in the communities of their choice.

The Kansas Association for the Medically Underserved (KAMU) is the state Primary Care Association (PCA) and is charged with providing training, technical assistance to, and advocacy on behalf of, federally-funded Community Health Centers in Kansas. KAMU's Mission is to promote access to high quality, culturally sensitive, comprehensive, cost effective primary health care services for the medially underserved in the state, regardless of ability to pay.

The Kansas Attorney General's Office, promoting human dignity through justice with compassion and professional excellence.

The Kansas Commission for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing advocates for and facilitates equal access to quality, coordinated and comprehensive services that enhance the quality of life for Kansans who are deaf and hard of hearing.

The Kansas Commmision on Disability Concerns (KCDC) - An information and referral office, providing technical assistance on civil rights and legislative issues.

The Kansas Department for Aging and Disability Services(KDADS) - is responsible for overseeing and administering the state’s Older American’s Act programs, behavioral health programs, home and community based services (HCBS) for older adults and persons with disabilities, the management and oversight of five state hospitals, survey and certification for adult care homes and the distribution of Medicaid long-term care payments.

The Department of Children and Family Services (DCF) - is responsible for overseeing and administering children and adult protection services, adoption services, foster care support, child support services, welfare (including Medicaid) and food assistance programs, as well as services dedicated to vocational rehabilitation.

The Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) optimizes the promotion and protection of the health of Kansans through efficient and effective public health programs and services and through preservation, protection and remediation.

The Kansas Housing Resources Corporation mission is to enhance Kansas communities with housing opportunities. This goal is achieved through using a variety of strategies and approaches, including increasing homeownership opportunities, leveraging the construction of more affordable rental housing, preserving existing housing through rehabilitation, promoting energy efficiency improvements for owner-occupied and rental housing, providing affordable housing through rent assistance to low-income families and senior citizens, and creating housing opportunities for previously underserved persons and communities.

The Kansas Human Rights Commission investigates complaints alleging discrimination and conducts public education programs designed to prevent discrimination.

The Kansas State School for the Blind (KSSB) empowers students with the knowledge, attitudes, and skills to assume responsible roles in society and to lead fulfilling lives. KSSB strives to establish partnerships with parents, school districts, and community resources to promote access to a high quality education for all Kansas students with visual impairments, regardless of where they attend school.

The Kansas State School for the Deaf provides a barrier-free communication environment which fosters early, fluent communication and on-going fluent communication as a means of broadening horizons and maximizing possibilities.

The Kansas Talking Book Service provides free home delivery of library resources designed to meet the cultural and recreational needs of Kansas citizens unable to use standard print because of a visual or physical impairment.

The Kansas Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) Program is designed to assess, plan, develop and provide VR services to eligible individuals with disabilities, consistent with their strengths, resources, priorities, concerns, abilities, capabilities, interests and informed choice. By providing services in this way, the VR program enables individuals with disabilities to prepare for and engage in gainful employment.

Kansas Youth Empowerment Academy (KYEA) promotes and supports the development of youth with disabilities so they become empowered as community leaders through education, mentoring, and peer support.

The Kansas Youth Leadership Forum is a motivational five day forum in which a group of about 30-40 high school juniors and seniors, with various disabilities, come together to learn about leadership, advocacy, and goal setting. Through various small and large sessions, delegates are able to interact with, and learn from each other and successful adults with disabilities. Small sessions give delegates the opportunity to share experiences and explore personal leadership and career plans. Large sessions involve speakers in the community who address everything from resources to assistive technology, from disability history to adaptive recreation.

Keys for Networking, Inc. is a non-profit, 501©3 organization providing information, support, and training to families in Kansas whose children who have educational, emotional, and/or behavioral problems.

KSHousingSearch.org is a housing locator service, sponsored by Kansas Housing Resources Corporation, which provides detailed information on affordable rental housing available throughout Kansas and allows people to locate housing that best fits their individual needs. The site can be accessed online 24 hours a day and is supported by a toll-free, bilingual call center at 1-877-428-8844, M-F, 9-8 EST.

Mission of Mercy program, sponsored by the Kansas Dental Charitable Foundation, is an annual event that provides free dental care to all patients on a first come-first served basis after first receiving a health screen prior to a dental assessment.

The Self Advocate Coalition of Kansas or SACK, is the statewide self-advocate group. SACK is made up of over 20 member local self-advocate groups from all over Kansas. What is a self-advocate group? A self-advocate group is a civic organization for adults with developmental disabilities. The purpose of self-advocate groups is to provide leadership experience, community involvement opportunities and to support the inclusion of people with developmental disabilities in the community.

Senior Health Insurance Counseling for Kansas (SHICK) is a free program offering Kansans an opportunity to talk with trained, community volunteers and get answers to questions about Medicare and other insurance issues.

The Statewide Independent Living Council of Kansas develops a State Independent Living Plan through external input, which ensures independent living for Kansans, advocates for the accomplishment of the State Plan objectives, monitors, reviews, and evaluates the implementation of the plan and is a statewide catalyst for independent living.

Topeka Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Advisory Council supports the civil rights of and full integration into Topeka community life for all people with disabilities by working toward providing full access to facilities, programs, services, activities and employment.

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Publications

The Cost of Untreated Mental Illness in Greater Kansas City, Health Care Foundation of Greater Kansas City, February 2012 - Approximately one in every 10 adults in the Greater Kansas City area has a serious mental illness (SMI).Without treatment, SMI can lead to unemployment, increased hospital and emergency room use, incarceration, suicide, and early death due to chronic medical conditions. An economic model was developed by The HSM Group, Ltd. to quantify the costs of untreated SMI among adults. (Cost of Untreated Mental Illness in Kansas Factsheet)

The Intersection between Budget Cuts to Services and Civil Rights of People with Disabilities under the “Olmstead” Decision, Presented to: The House Committee on Long Term Care and Aging, Provided by:  Mike Oxford, Executive Director, Topeka Independent Living Resource Center, January 26, 2010 - This testimony presents a cogent argument regarding the necessity for systematic, comprehensive, long range planning to address the future long term care needs of our state that culminates in the development of an Olmstead Plan for the state of Kansas.

Going Home - Is a booklet about home and community based options to institutional care. It explains how TILRC can help you get the healthcare services and supports you need in your own home and community. (printable version in rtf format)

Legislative Procedure in Kansas, Kansas Legislative Research Department, November 2006

Testimony Presented to the House Committee on Appropriations in Support of and Requesting Consideration of Amendments to HB 2673, By Mike Oxford, TILRC Executive Director, March 9, 2010 - HB 2673 would create a Medicaid provider assessment on nursing facilities in Kansas. Revenue from the assessment would be used to finance initiatives to maintain or improve the quality and quantity of care in Kansas in both nursing facilities and HCBS Waiver Programs.

Testimony addressing House Bill 2656 before the House Committee on Long Term Care and Aging; Bob Bethell, Chair; Presented by Mike Oxford, Executive Director - HB 2656 would transfer all powers, duties and functions of the Adult Protective Services Program (APS) of the Department of Social and Rehabilitation Services (SRS) to the Office of the Attorney General as of January 1, 2013.

Testimony to the Senate Committee on Ways and Means, SRS Budget Sub-committee; Carolyn K. McGinn, Chair; Presented by Mike Oxford, Executive Director: March 09, 2012


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