Updated December 2014
- Decatur County is served by KU Medical Center's Area Health Education Center (AHEC), 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
- 1 student from Decatur County is studying at KU Medical Center.
- 1 Decatur County physician serves as volunteer KU Medical Center faculty, providing medical students with hands-on training in rural and underserved communities as part of the Rural Preceptorship Program.
- Decatur County is part of the Northwest Medical Education Network with Michael Machen, MD, a resident of Quinter, 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.
Strengthening the Health Care Workforce
- 3 KU Medical Center graduates live and/or practice in Decatur County.
- 2 health care providers have been placed in Decatur County since 2004 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.
Researching to Improve Health
- Hospitalization has been identified as a teachable moment in which patients may be more likely to quit smoking. Decatur Health Systems, Inc. is one of 35 Kansas hospitals participating in Kan Quit II, a study that provides smoking cessation counseling, treatment and case management services to inpatients. The study then evaluates the effectiveness of the smoking cessation services. The project is led by Edward Ellerbeck, MD, MPH, and is sponsored by the National Cancer Institute and the National Institutes of Health.
- Obesity is a risk factor for breast cancer recurrence, and rural women are considered to be at a higher risk for obesity and to have less access to health care. Female patients from 60 counties, including Decatur County, are taking part in a weight-loss maintenance intervention program for breast cancer survivors in rural Kansas. The program connects survivors for long-term weight management using phone-based peer group support. The study then evaluates the effectiveness of the program over time. This research is led by Christie Befort, PhD, and is sponsored by the National Cancer Institute.
Advancing Health Care Access
- Decatur County residents saw KU Medical Center health care providers 21 times via telemedicine in FY14. An interactive video technology that connects providers and patients when distance separates the two, telemedicine services are provided through the University of Kansas Center for Telemedicine and Telehealth.
- Decatur County residents made 2 visits to KU Medical Center health care providers in outreach clinics held outside of Kansas City in FY14.
- Decatur Health Systems 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.
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Jun 25, 2015