Casey County student smoke-free group receives first Healthy Kentucky Policy Champion award

A group of 19 Casey County High School Students are the first recipients of the Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky’s new Healthy Kentucky Policy Champion award for their work to change the smoking culture on their school campus. The Casey Youth Coalition’s (CYC) campaign has helped reduce smoking, leading to a 10 percent decrease in 30-day tobacco use among 10th graders in 2016, for example....

Changes to Medicaid program mean Kentuckians may need to work, volunteer to remain eligible

By Melissa Patrick Kentucky Health News The Trump administration has announced rules changes for the Medicaid program that allow states to require some enrollees to work or volunteer – changes that likely pave the way for Kentucky’s new Medicaid plan to be approved. “Let me be clear to everyone in this room, we will approve proposals that promote community engagement activities,”...

Still without insurance, not Medicaid eligible, you might qualify for free policy; deadline Dec. 15

By Melissa Patrick Kentucky Health News Premiums are higher for health insurance through the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, but federal subsidies mean the total cost will be about the same. And many people will qualify for subsidies large enough to completely pay for a low-cost “bronze” plan — or make it less than the penalty for not having health insurance. To find an...

Staying Fit: Six Ways to Stay Active and Healthy over the Holiday Season

By Heather Thomas Special to KyForward It’s that time of year again! Through the end of the year, your schedule will likely be filled with festive activities which usually include delicious treats that even the most disciplined find hard to turn down. Not making the time to fit in exercise, combined with an overindulgence of food, will disrupt your normal weight-control intentions. While it is important...

Tobacco’s Toll: New push aims to curb the other addiction problem in country’s sickest states

By Mary Meehan Special to KyForward Hundreds of kids scurrying to buses are oblivious to a sign above them declaring Bourbon County High School “100 percent Tobacco Free.” But upstairs in the library, sophomore and anti-smoking advocate Jacob Steward unfurls a six-foot scroll with earth-toned papers trapped between clear sheets of laminate. He begins reading the anti-smoking slogans he’ll post...

52 Weeks of Public Health: Recognizing Diabetes impact on hundreds of thousands of Kentuckians

In recognition of World Diabetes Day on Nov. 14, the Kentucky Department Public Health (DPH) within the Cabinet for Health and Families Services (CHFS) is bringing attention to diabetes and its impact on hundreds of thousands of Kentuckians. Diabetes is a common, lifelong medical condition where the body does not make or properly use insulin. One in 8 – or 13.1 percent – of Kentucky adults...

Foot Health: With fall sports in full swing, don’t let those high ankle sprains sideline your athlete

By Dr. Jamie Settles Carter Special to KyForward As Fall is in full swing and winter is quickly approaching, football season and basketball season are upon us. And you can’t have sports without sports’ injuries, right? One injury, in particular, keeps athletes out for longer periods of time, and that is the high ankle sprain. Different than a common ankle sprain in that it injures a set of ligaments...

ACA enrollment is on through Dec. 15; sign up early for assistance and compare plans, experts advise

By Melissa Patrick Kentucky Health News Sign up early, make sure you compare costs and plans and make an early appointment with your “application assister.” That was the advice given on an Oct. 31 Kaiser Family Foundation webinar offering open enrollment advice to consumers in Kentucky, as well as in Tennessee and Virginia. Open enrollment began Nov. 1 for 2018 health insurance plans sold...

52 Weeks of Public Health: Helping mothers deliver healthy babies during Prematurity Awareness Month

Premature birth is the leading cause of newborn death and childhood disability. As part of the 52 Weeks of Public Health Campaign, the Kentucky Department for Public Health (DPH) within the Cabinet for Health and Family Services (CHFS) is promoting preterm birth prevention as a part of Prematurity Awareness Month. In Kentucky, the preterm birth rate in 2015 for Kentucky babies was 10.8 percent, higher...

Journal of Rural Health shows the importance of integrating oral health, primary-care medicine

By Melissa Patrick Kentucky Health News Three studies reported in the autumn edition of The Journal of Rural Health show different ways a regular health care provider can help patients get access to dental care, and all three articles say that integrating oral health and primary care would benefit patients. The first study, using data from more than 26,000 participants in the 2012 Medical Expenditure...

First Lady Glenna Bevin hosts “Pjammin’ Party” for children affected by pediatric cancer

First Lady Glenna Bevin recently invited more than 80 children and family members from across Kentucky directly affected by pediatric cancer to the Governor’s Mansion for a pajama party. The children and their families were treated to dinner, crafts, music and a movie. Additionally, the American Childhood Cancer Organization provided books for each child, sibling and parent with information on...

New award to recognize champions behind laws, policies to improve Kentucky’s health

Do you know someone who is a tireless advocate for health policy changes in your community or in Kentucky? A new award announced by the Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky will recognize individuals and organizations from every corner of the Commonwealth working to enact local or state policies or laws that improve health. The Foundation will present up to two Healthy Kentucky Policy Champion awards...

Trump’s top health official makes first stop Ky. after declaring opioid epidemic a public-health emergency

The day after declaring the opioid epidemic a national public-health emergency without allocating more money for it, President Trump’s top health official came to Kentucky and heard pleas for funds to meet the challenge. In a visit that wasn’t publicized in advance, acting Health and Human Services Secretary Eric D. Hargan visited a Lexington clinic Friday afternoon to meet with doctors,...

Open Enrollment for 2018 Marketplace health insurance plan starts Nov. 1 and runs through Dec. 15

Open Enrollment for 2018 Marketplace health insurance plans at healthcare.gov is quickly approaching.  The Health Benefit Exchange (HBE), within the Cabinet for Health and Family Services (CHFS) is working to ensure Kentuckians are prepared, informed and have the resources they need to choose a 2018 health plan.  This year’s open enrollment, which runs from November 1 until December 15, is...

Sixteen year-old Ashland native chosen to represent Shriner’s Hospitals in Las Vegas PGA Tour event

Jake Damron, 16, a patient at Shriners Hospitals for Children Medical Center—Lexington from Ashland will have the experience of a lifetime in November when he represents the hospital at the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open, an official PGA TOUR event in Las Vegas this November. Jake was chosen as one of 22 patient ambassadors throughout the country to represent the hospital network at the tournament,...

Fuller Physical Therapy invites community to celebrate newest location in Morgantown Nov. 2

Fuller Physical Therapy is opening its latest location in Morgantown on Thursday, Nov. 2 with a celebration from 12-1 p.m. It will include free hot dogs, tours and an official ribbon cutting with the Chamber of Commerce. The community is invited to attend the free event. Located at 811 South Main Street, the facility is the fourth Fuller office to open. The other Fuller Physical Therapy locations are...

Kentucky American Water taking unwanted drugs as part of county’s Med Toss event Saturday

Kentucky American Water supports Fayette County’s annual fall Med Toss drug take-back event on Saturday, Oct. 28, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. At MedToss, residents may drop off unwanted, unused or outdated prescription drugs without even having to get out of their vehicles. They may simply drive into Kentucky American Water’s customer parking lot located at 2300 Richmond Road in Lexington and provide...

American Red Cross encouraging Kentuckians to donate blood before the busy holiday season

With the busy holiday season approaching, the American Red Cross encourages donors to give blood now to help ensure a sufficient supply for patients this winter. Between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day, many regular donors delay giving due to holiday activities and travel. This often decreases the amount of donated blood available for patients. More donations are needed in the weeks leading up to...

CHFS announces availability of weekly influenza surveillance report to track activity across Kentucky

Officials with the Kentucky Department for Public Health (DPH), within the Cabinet for Health and Family Services (CHFS), announce the availability of an online weekly influenza surveillance report used to gauge current flu activity circulating in Kentucky. This new public service is an example of the Cabinet’s priority to strengthen data collection and analytics and then to make the information...

Study finds more than a quarter of insured adults are under-insured due high-deductible health plans

By Melissa Patrick Kentucky Health News More than one-fourth of U.S. adults with health insurance were under-insured in 2016, including 44 percent who got their coverage from the federal marketplace and almost 25 percent who got their coverage from employer plans, according to a recent study. Using data from The Commonwealth Fund’s 2016 Biennial Health Insurance Survey, a report from the fund...