Justice Department may probe profit over quality care

KanCare draws ‘deep concern’ from National Council on Disability

Freelance writer/editor

TOPEKA, Kan. — Big news on the Kansas managed care front could reshape the health care landscape and growing national debate on the merits of privatized, for-profit care.

In a Dec. 13 letter from the National Council on Disability, several significant and non-binding recommendations to improve the state’s for-profit Medicaid plan — also known as KanCare — were made to the President and Congress.

“It’s clear to NCD that many unresolved issues remain for people with disabilities” in Kansas, the report said. “The federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services should conduct an oversight review of the current administration of KanCare.” Continue reading

Advocacy is tedious, patient and lonely

But every once in a while you win: Ten tips to success

Freelance writer/editor

Instant gratification is a trait not often found in the souls of the good people who advocate for making the lives of people with disabilities better.

Fellow advocates, you know who you are.

All have embraced the hare-and-tortoise pace of change early in their disability civil-rights’ careers. And know that steady wins the race.

Advocacy is behind-the-scenes, unheralded, long-hours work that generally doesn’t get you on the evening news. It’s early morning trips to the state capitol or cramped flights to D.C. to meet with congressional leaders whose only goal is to get a picture with a person in a wheelchair. Continue reading

Prairie Village man to discuss his KanCare experience

National Council on Disability wants to gauge managed care in Kansas

Freelance writer/editor

KANSAS CITY — The President’s National Council on Disability is scheduled to come to Topeka this month to hold panel hearings on how well the state’s new managed-care program is faring in Kansas.

As a Prairie Village resident, KanCare state Medicaid recipient, national advocate for people with disabilities and policy adviser for the Greater Kansas City Spinal Cord Injury Association, I will join panel discussions held Oct. 8 at the state Capitol to discuss my experience with the state’s new managed-care program.

Under new managed-care rules to crack down on “abuse,” my family faces a 76 percent drop in care, a move doctors say is wildly unrealistic and a move my wife says will force her to file for divorce and as a result, tear our family apart. Continue reading


Pistol packin’ prairie publishers were polished at name calling

David Chartrand

David Chartrand

Like most Americans you are growing increasingly offended by the shocking things you read and hear in the mass media.

It’s a good thing you weren’t born in the mid-19th Century. For one thing, you’d be dead by now. You’d also be more accustomed to raw language. Consider, for example, the editorial wars among the nation’s earliest newspapers.

The 1800s was a time of blustery newspaper wars. Name-calling was a prized art on the Great Plains. Rival publishers saved their best shots for each other. Continue reading

Ouch! Kansas, the purple state

Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback recently said in his State of the State Address, “Look out, Texas, her comes Kansas!”

The following is an interesting view on what is taking place in Kansas politics during Brownback’s reign. It’s by Huffington Post freelance writer Jeffrey Ann Goudie, who grew up in Midland, Texas, and now lives in Topeka having moved to Kansas several years ago.

She says despite its national image of being a red state, Kansas actually was a good mix of all views making it a progressive purple. But because Brownback, et al, has made the state so red because of his aggressive attack policies on public education, social programs, and tax cuts, the state is now purple because of bruising.

Click here to read her article.


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