health care

New roles for paramedics
9:26 pm
Wed April 16, 2014

New Take On Emergency Care: Christian Hospital Using Paramedics To Reduce 911 Calls

Shannon Watson, community health supervisor in the EMS; and EMS Chief Chris Ceborello reviewing EMS data on recent calls for service. in front of an EMS vehicle.
Credit (Credit: Nora Ibrahim, St. Louis Public Radio Intern)

Paramedic Jaclyn Kloecker has experienced her share of tension, turmoil, rising adrenaline and blaring sirens. She's been responding to 911 calls and rushing the sick or injured to emergency rooms for 15 years. 

On a recent rainy morning, however, Kloecker wasn't responding to an emergency. Rather, she was on a calmer, quieter mission, performing medical screenings aimed at reducing the number of 911 calls that Christian Hospital’s Emergency Medical Service system handles.

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The Rundown
11:42 pm
Sun March 23, 2014

Health, Science, Environment Rundown: Spring Fling

Spring is springing.
Credit (UPI/Bill Greenblatt)

Last week, people all over St. Louis – and all over the Midwest and East Coast, probably – celebrated the official start of spring. They celebrated because the winter has been unusually long and cold and, somehow, darker than usual. And they celebrated with a tinge of worry that the brutal winter could give way to an equally brutal, hot summer.

If that does happen, be prepared for a lot of talk about climate change. 

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Rural medicine
10:13 pm
Thu March 20, 2014

Building A Pipeline Of Doctors To Help The Shortage In Missouri's Rural Communities

The University of Missouri system is working to fill the shortage of rural doctors with a pipeline students who come from rural areas.
Credit (Credit: University of Missouri Health System)

Part three of three

For someone who was clueless about what he wanted to do after finishing high school, Luke Stephens has done quite well in life. 

He’s now Dr. Luke Stephens, with a degree in cell and molecular biology from Missouri State University in 2004, and a medical degree from the University of Missouri at Columbia.

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Obituary
10:52 am
Wed March 19, 2014

Rodney M. Coe: Saint Louis University Sociologist Promoted Community Service For Physicians

Rodney Michael Coe
Credit Provided by Saint Louis University

Rodney Coe, a sociologist who led Saint Louis University’s Department of Family and Community Medicine for a decade, wanted medical students to be more than healers with a great bedside manner. He wanted them to know and understand the communities they would be serving. A medical school program that bears his name made his hope a reality.

“He was very proud of that,” said his wife, Elaine Coe.

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Challenges to rural health care
11:24 pm
Tue March 18, 2014

The Doctor Shortage In Rural Missouri: Are Advanced Practice Nurses A Solution?

Missouri has about 5,000 nurse practitioners, but laws restrict how much medicine they can practice. Some say loosening the laws would help ease the shortage of doctors in rural Missouri.
Credit (Credit: Flickr/Free Grunge Texutres

Part two of a three-part series.

Lisa Schofield regards her business as an example of the future of health care in rural Missouri.

She owns the Theodosia Family Medical Clinic in south central Missouri, a region with a big demand for medical care and too few doctors to meet it. Theodosia is situated in Ozark County near the Arkansas border. The clinic serves about 900 patients, all of whom are treated by a nurse practitioner, or an N.P.

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Medical Care Shortage.
11:56 pm
Sun March 16, 2014

Is There A Doctor — Or Nurse Practitioner — In The House? Not In Rural Missouri

Missouri's shortage of doctors in rural areas causes physical and financial hardship for thousands of people.
Credit (Credit: Wikimedia Commons/Steve Morgan)

Part one of a three part series:

He woke up in the middle of the night late last year, one hand swollen and the rest of his body was shaking all over.

John Redford realized the symptoms were the consequences of several bites and scratches the day before from his struggle to put the family's 40-pound cat into a cage. He managed to calm himself enough that night and drive an old Mustang 50 miles to a hospital emergency room  in Jefferson City. There doctors began weeks of  treatment  and ultimately saved Redford from losing a finger.

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Quality Index
10:37 pm
Sun February 23, 2014

Science & Health Rundown: The Air We Breathe

YES student Aleah Brooks at the St. Louis Science Center Ozone Garden, 2013
Credit Provided by Saint Louis University

It’s a stretch to think about summer now. 

But close your eyes and imagine.

The sun is shining; bees are buzzing; your arms move through warm air; you even have to mop a thin veil of perspiration from your brow. And on the news in the morning, Geri Mitchell intones the familiar admonition: “It’s a red air quality day. Sensitive groups should avoid exercising outdoors.”

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Healthcare and Medicaid
3:59 pm
Fri January 31, 2014

Sebelius Puts A Price And Face On Health Insurance Coverage In Missouri

Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius holds a press conference with St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay in north St. Louis. Law student Nathaniel Carroll spoke about the benefit of having health insurance.
Credit Jason Rosenbaum, St. Louis Public Radio and the Beacon

U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius tried to put a price tag and a face on the government’s health reform push in Missouri when she visited the Grace Hill Water Tower Health Center on Friday. 

The price tag: $5 million a day. That’s how much she says Missouri is losing by refusing to expand its Medicaid program under the Affordable Care Act.

The face: a local resident who praised the law for the help it is providing his family while he attends law school.

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Sen. Roy Blunt
1:36 pm
Sat January 25, 2014

Blunt Offers State of the Union 'Prebuttal'

Sen. Roy Blunt (R-MO) delivers a preemptive response to President Obama's 2014 State of the Union
Credit St. Louis Public Radio

U.S. Senator Roy Blunt of Missouri says President Obama has "a lot of explaining to do” in his State of the Union address Tuesday.

Blunt offered a preemptive rebuttal to the speech in the GOP’s weekly radio address Saturday, saying Americans are suffering under unnecessary regulation and lackluster job creation.

Obama is expected to call for a “Year of Action” on poverty, but Blunt calls the focus on income inequality “more of the same.”

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Medicaid Fraud
5:23 pm
Wed January 15, 2014

Mo. Medicaid Fraud Unit Recovers $47 Million In 2013

An extreme closeup of U.S. currency.
(via Flickr/kevindooley)

The state of Missouri recovered more than $47 million in fraudulent claims made by Medicaid providers in 2013.

That's about an average year for Attorney General Chris Koster's Medicaid Fraud Unit. The office has recovered as much as $100 million, and as little as $20 million, in a year.

Koster, a Democrat, says those wide variations are triggered by how much money Missouri receives from national settlements. But even though more national settlements means more money for the state's coffers, he says the fraud that concerns him the most is conducted by the smaller providers.

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