Wyandotte County

Updated February 2013

Wyandotte County is served by the East office of KU Medical Center's Area Health Education Centers (AHECs) in Pittsburg, which serves the state through student education initiatives, professional education for health care providers, health screenings, clinics and public presentations on health topics.

Enhancing Student Education

  • 100 students from Wyandotte County are currently studying at KU Medical Center.
  • 1,784 K-12 students in Wyandotte County participated in activities during 2012 that encouraged them to consider careers in health care, math and science. These events were hosted by the Area Health Education Centers and Office for Cultural Enhancement and Diversity.
  • Wyandotte County is part of the Eastern Medical Education Network with Robert Haskins, MD, a resident of Pittsburg, serving as the Medical Education Director. The medical education director helps coordinate the School of Medicine's efforts to mentor, train and place physicians throughout Kansas.
  • The Community Health Project provides interprofessional, service-learning internships to enhance the educational experience of KU students in the health professions. The students are immersed in public health and social service settings in the Kansas City metropolitan area and across Kansas. The project is facilitated by Cheryl Gibson, PhD, Wendy Hildenbrand, MPH, OTR/L, FAOTA, and Stewart Babbott, MD, with financial support from the Kansas Health Foundation since 1992.
  • KU Medical Center hosts dozens of programs for high school students and their teachers in the state and metropolitan area to explore health careers, including Doctor for A Day, Health Careers Pathways Program, Science Education Partnership Award programs, Women in Healthcare: The Next Generation and Health Careers Teacher Summer Externship, in addition to tours.
  • More than 4,000 children and their families have received comprehensive child development and family support services through Project Eagle.

Strengthening the Health Care Workforce

  • 566 KU Medical Center graduates live and/or practice in Wyandotte County.
  • 1 health care provider has been placed in Wyandotte County since 2003 through the Kansas Recruitment and Retention Center, which provides placement assistance to rural health organizations and seeks to enhance the quality and quantity of health care professionals in rural Kansas.
  • 4 Wyandotte County physicians received funding through the Kansas Bridging Plan, a loan-forgiveness program offered since 1991 to primary care medical residents who agree to practice in rural Kansas.
  • 4 shifts were covered by temporary physicians, which allowed Wyandotte County physicians necessary time off in 2012. These coverages were made via KU Medical Center's Kansas Locum Tenens and Kansas Medical Resource programs.
  • 868 health care professionals from Wyandotte County participated in KU Medical Center continuing education courses and conferences in 2012.
  • 520 professional education and administrative visits in Wyandotte County occurred in 2012 via telemedicine, an interactive video technology that connects providers and patients when distance separates the two. The technology is operated by the University of Kansas Center for Telemedicine and Telehealth.

Researching to Improve Health

  • KU Medical Center is home to Frontiers: The Heartland Institute for Clinical and Translational Research, which works with five academic partners, 10 health system partners and 14 community partners, to improve the environment for clinical and translational research across the metropolitan area and throughout the region.
  • Wyandotte County is working with KU researchers to investigate the effectiveness of contextually-relevant occupational therapy interventions for improving outcomes for children with autism spectrum disorders. Principle Investigator Winnie Dunn, PhD, OTR, FAOTA, is also evaluating whether the therapy enhances parent competence.
  • The Argentine Healthy Food Initiative, directed by Kim Kimminau, PhD, engaged neighborhood-level organizations in the Argentine community to collect household data and citizen input on possible options to improve access to healthy food. This community-based research project resulted in a business plan to achieve community-driven solutions for the low-income, diverse neighborhood. Through their efforts, this once food desert celebrated a grocery store's grand opening in December 2013.
  • In partnership with the American Stroke Foundation, KU Medical Center researchers are exploring how participation in community-run programs can enhance reintegration into the community for stroke survivors. The project's principal investigator is Lisa Mische Lawson, CTRS, PhD.
  • Community organizations are important partners for student service learning. KU Medical Center researchers Dory Sabata, OTD, OTR/L, SCEM, and Lauren Foster, OTD, OTR/L, in the Occupational Therapy Department are examining the effects of service learning students on the organizations they serve. The researchers will interview organizations in Wyandotte County that provide service learning for occupational therapy students.
  • Wyandotte County families are working with KU Medical Center's Jane Cox, MS, OTR, to examine if there is a relationship between the leisure activities children, ages 6-12, choose and their sensory processing preferences. To collect the data, the researchers visit the children and their families in their communities or homes.
  • Parents in Wyandotte County worked with KU Medical Center researchers to understand the effectiveness of strengths-based coaching for parents, a technique that encourages parents to reflect on their own parenting actions to determine if that action would be effective in a future situation. The project was led by Lauren Foster, OTD, OTR/L.
  • Church pastors and congregants in select churches in Wyandotte County are working with KU Medical Center researchers to determine the effectiveness of a social marketing model in communicating colorectal cancer prevention messages. The study, titled "Communicating Colorectal Cancer Prevention (CRC) Through Urban African American Churches," is being led by Crystal Lumpkins, PhD. Read more about her work.

Advancing Health Care Access

  • 277 Wyandotte County residents saw KU Medical Center health care providers via telemedicine, an interactive video technology that connects providers and patients when distance separates the two, in 2012. These services are provided through the University of Kansas Center for Telemedicine and Telehealth.
  • 78 Kansans received free medical attention and education in 2012 through preventive screenings and events hosted in Wyandotte County with support from KU Medical Center.
  • The University of Kansas Hospital in Kansas City, Kan. is a member of the Midwest Cancer Alliance, a network of hospitals, physicians groups, and cancer support and patient advocacy organizations bringing cancer research, care, and professional support together to advance the quality and reach of cancer care, prevention, early detection, and survivorship in the Heartland.
  • Blood and marrow transplant patients at The University of Kansas Cancer Center can participate in Tiles of Hope, a creative outlet for patients to express their feelings about their cancer experience. The project is facilitated by occupational therapy students under the direction of Lisa Mische Lawson, CTRS, PhD.
  • JayDoc Free Clinic offers completely free care two nights a week at Southwest Boulevard Family Health Care. JayDoc serves more than 2,500 patients each year and is operated entirely by KU Medical Center students and volunteer professionals.
  • Kansas City residents receive high-quality, patient-centered, affordable health care at Kansas' first Patient-Centered Medical Home at Silver City Health Clinic, operated by KU HealthPartners.
  • Since 1998, students in Wyandotte County schools can see a health care provider during the school day through TeleKidcare, a program operated by the KU Center for Telemedicine and Telehealth with the assitance of school nurses.

Serving Communities

  • KU Medical Center faculty and staff provided an educational workshop on breast health and cancer information to 12 people at the American Indian Community Advisory Board meeting in Kansas City in 2012.
  • KU Medical Center faculty and staff provided an educational workshop on breast health and cancer prevention information to 12 people at the American Indian Community Advisory Board meeting in Kansas City in 2012.
  • Latina women in Wyandotte County train with KU Medical Center faculty and staff to become Promotoras, or community health workers. Promotoras encourage cancer prevention and healthy lifestyles among their families, friends and neighbors. In 2012, 9 women joined the effort.
  • KU Medical Center's Department of Dietetics and Nutrition partners with Cross-Lines Community Outreach, Inc. to offer "Food for your Family," an ongoing program that provides 8-week sessions of nutrition education and hands-on cooking skill building. The program is designed to teach participants how to eat healthy on a budget. KUMC faculty, staff and students participate.
  • KU Medical Center's Occupational Therapy Department is developing a swimming program for children with autism spectrum disorders in collaboration with Johnson County Parks & Recreation and the Kansas City Blazers Swim Team. The project is lead by Lisa Mische Lawson, CTRS, PhD, with funding from Autism Speaks.
  • Dozens of Wyandotte County agencies benefit from service provided by interns in the Community Outreach Program. The interns, which are students in the Schools of Health Professions, Nursing and Graduate Studies complete 135 hours annually at an agency of their choice.
  • The Landon Center on Aging offers a variety of programs that equip older adults and the people who care for them with the tools to lead healthier lives, including brown bag lectures, chili feeds, and the Forever Young Choir.

Outreach Connections

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Last modified: Jan 28, 2014
NFL funds KU for WyCo Breast Cancer Project

Breast Cancer Screening

As the nation marks October Breast Cancer Awareness Month, the National Football League (NFL) is funding a Wyandotte County project conducted by the University of Kansas Medical Center to increase breast cancer awareness and screening among low income women in Wyandotte. Read more about KU's project here.