A publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky reacts to CDC finding historically low smoking rates among adults

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on Thursday reported that the cigarette smoking rates for adults in the United States in 2017 reached a historic low of 14 percent or 34 million adults. This is a 67 percent decline since 1965 when the adult cigarette smoking rate was 42 percent. The rate for young adults, ages 18 to 24, was 10 percent, down from 13 percent in 2016. Following is...

New initiative aims to change the trajectory for children exposed to adverse childhood experiences

By Mary Kuhlman Public News Service Children exposed to traumatizing events can suffer physically and emotionally as they grow. And a special initiative in Kentucky is working to help change the trajectory for these youth. Adverse childhood experiences, also known as “ACEs,” include witnessing violence or domestic abuse, the death of a parent, and poverty. Dr. David Finke is co-chair of...

Coalition for a Smoke-Free Tomorrow to host conference on health impact of popular Juul devices

Concerned that the escalation of Juul and other e-cigarette use will undermine progress in reducing tobacco-related disease in Kentucky, the Coalition for a Smoke-Free Tomorrow will host a half-day conference in Louisville on Monday, December 10, to explore the latest evidence about the health impact of these devices. In addition, the Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky and Kentucky Youth Advocates will...

Experts to take an even deeper look at Kentucky’s opioid crises at September 24 forum in Lexington

By Mary Kuhlman Public News Service As health, business and community leaders in Kentucky continue their work to combat the opioid epidemic, they’ll take an even deeper dive into the problem at an upcoming event. In recent years, the state has limited painkiller prescriptions and joined a lawsuit against drug companies. Despite these efforts, drug overdose deaths in Kentucky have jumped about...

Statewide campaign urges ‘Focus on Flu’ in advance of statewide flu shot day September 26

“Focus on Flu” is a statewide campaign launched in Frankfort Thursday to prevent another epidemic-level flu season like the one last year that hit every region of the state, infected 10,500 Kentuckians and led to the deaths of 325 people, including five children. The campaign urges Kentuckians to get their flu shots on Kentucky Flu Shot Day, which is September 26, or at least by the end of October,...

New state health commissioner Jeffrey Howard’s sincerity, passion ‘a breath of fresh air’ for Kentucky

By Melissa Patrick Kentucky Health News Kentucky’s recently installed health commissioner is a 30-year-old doctor, two years short of being a surgeon, a goal he still plans to achieve. But right now he’s in charge of public health in a state with huge health issues, and local health departments with big financial issues. Dr. Jeffrey Howard is still learning. He will graduate from Harvard...

Whitesburg primary care physician Dr. Van Breeding named Healthy Kentucky Policy Champion

Whitesburg primary care physician Van S. Breeding has been named a Healthy Kentucky Policy Champion by the Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky for his leadership in fighting the substance use crisis in Letcher, Harlan, Perry, Owsley and Bell counties. The award recognizes individuals and organizations working to improve the health of Kentuckians through policy change. Dr. Van Breeding was named Healthy...

Foundation for a Healthy Ky. names Paducah Mayor Brandi Harless Healthy Kentucky Policy Champion

Paducah Mayor Brandi Harless has been named a Healthy Kentucky Policy Champion by the Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky for her leadership toward enacting a stronger smoke-free ordinance in the city. The award recognizes individuals and organizations working to improve the health of Kentuckians through policy change. Harless is now eligible for the Healthy Kentucky Policy Champion of the Year award,...

Rural Blog: Nine Kentucky counties among 42 ‘bright spots’ identified by Appalachian health researchers

Appalachia’s major problems include poor health, but in the 420-county region there are counties that have better health than you might expect, given their socioeconomic status. The Appalachian Regional Commission issued a study Tuesday that points out 42 “bright spots,” 10 of them with case studies, that may suggest strategies for others in the region. This map spotlights the 10...

Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky’s next Health for a Change training webinar set for Aug. 1

The next webinar in the Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky’s Health for a Change training series, titled Understanding Trauma, Health, and Care: Kentucky ACEs, will focus on how health in Kentucky is shaped by Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) and efforts in Kentucky to address them. Participants on the webinar will hear from Senior Deputy Commissioner for the Kentucky Department for Public...

Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky seeks input for topics, questions for poll; deadline is Aug. 1

The Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky is seeking input about the topics and questions to be included in the next Kentucky Health Issues Poll. The deadline for suggestions is Aug. 1. KHIP is a telephone poll of Kentucky adults, asking their views on key health policy issues likely to come before the legislature or local policy-making bodies, and their opinions on health-related topics and health status...

Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky announces Lawrence Prybil as newest board member

The Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky announced today that Lawrence Prybil, PhD., LFACHE, former Associate Dean of the University of Kentucky College of Public Health, is the newest member of its 15-person Board of Directors. Prybil has been appointed to complete a term that ends in December 2019; he will be eligible for two additional three-year terms thereafter. Dr. Lawrence Prybil “We’ve...

Registration open for 2018 Bost Health Policy Forum; Opioids and alternative pain therapies among topics

As Kentucky continues to struggle with the health impact and economic cost of a massive opioid addiction crisis, the Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky’s annual health policy forum will explore medical marijuana and other alternative pain therapies, as well as the rise in infectious disease associated with the crisis. “We need to understand the truth behind the push for medical marijuana,...

Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky applauds Murray City Council’s passage of smoke free policy

The Murray City Council has passed, by an 8-2 vote, a comprehensive smoke-free policy to protect residents and visitors from exposure to dangerous secondhand smoke. “Heartfelt congratulations to Mayor Jack Rose,” said Ben Chandler, President and CEO of the Foundation For a Healthy Kentucky. “When Charlie Ross and I met with Mayor Rose back in April to talk about the health benefits...

Health policy forum to provide update on Kentucky’s substance abuse epidemic, discuss solutions

An update on solutions to Kentucky’s substance use epidemic is the topic for the Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky’s annual health policy forum, to be held from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Monday, September 24, at the Marriott Griffin Gate in Lexington. Speakers at the Howard L. Bost Memorial Health Policy Forum will share strategies to address the crisis, including responses to rising infectious...

Baptist Health Paducah cardiologist Pat Withrow named Healthy Kentucky Policy Champion

The Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky has named cardiologist Dr. Pat Withrow of Paducah a Healthy Kentucky Policy Champion. Withrow is the director of outreach for Baptist Health Paducah and the governor-elect of the Kentucky Chapter of the American College of Cardiology. “He is known locally and statewide for his advocacy of improved health. I know firsthand he is a health champion for our area,”...

Kentucky Health Issues Poll: 80 percent of Ky. adults favor court-mandated treatment for drug offenders

Eight out of 10 Kentucky adults favor court-mandated treatment programs for individuals with first or second drug offenses, according to the latest Kentucky Health Issues Poll (KHIP). Among polled adults, those with more education were more likely to report support of treatment programs, which can be ordered in place of or in addition to incarceration. KHIP, an annual opinion poll of Kentucky adults,...

KHIP: Historic shift in perceptions and most Kentucky adults now believe addiction is a disease

The most recent Kentucky Health Issues Poll (KHIP) found that 7 in 10 Kentucky adults believe that addiction is a disease (70%).  Attitudes towards addiction as a disease were the same both among respondents who have a family member or friend who has experienced problems as a result of heroin use, methamphetamine use, or prescription drug use and among those who did not indicate such firsthand experience...

Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky elects Montgomery, Wright as board officers

Healthcare Executive Allen K. Montgomery, Jr., J.D., of Louisville has been elected vice chair of the board for the Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky. Montgomery also was named chair of the Board’s strategic planning and evaluation committee. Additional newly elected Board officers are Brent Wright, M.D., of Glasgow, as treasurer and Vivian Lasley-Bibbs, MPH, of Lexington as Secretary. Montgomery,...

Passport Health CEO Mark Carter named chairman of the board of the Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky

Mark Carter, CEO of Passport Health Plan, has been named chair of the board of directors of the Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky, effective immediately. Carter has been a member of the Foundation’s board for 12 years, from 2003 to 2010, and again since 2013. He also has served on the board’s executive committee and as chair of the finance and investment committee. Mark Carter “This...