Expanded Tobacco Cessation Benefits for KanCare Enrollees


Please share these resources with your patients eligible for KanCare benefits. This handy card describes the new counseling and pharmacy benefits to support KanCare members who are seeking to end their dependence on tobacco.  Click here to order copies or to download a high resolution file to print copies for your use as well as a series of four full-color 11×17 posters which are available to promote the new KanCare benefits.

Share these two short videos to drive utilization of the expanded benefits:  a peer-to-peer video featuring a patient who successfully used the KanCare benefits to quit tobacco and a provider video featuring a physician who is encouraging other providers to engage patients to utilize cessation benefits.

Click on these links for more detailed guidance from KanCare about the expanded counseling benefits  and the expanded pharmacy benefits.

Vaping Epidemic in Kansas


As of September 27, Kansas has had two confirmed deaths related to vaping. Kansas currently has 11 probable/confirmed vaping-related cases, including the two deaths. Of the cases, 64% are male and age from 17-67 years old. 10 of the 11 were hospitalized and two remain hospitalized. Regarding the types of vaping products used, there was a combination or those reporting using only nicotine, only THC, only CBD and a combination of THC and nicotine.

Kansas vaping statistics show that show that 34.8% of Kansas high school students have ever tried e-cigarettes and 10.6% of Kansas high school students use e-cigarettes. (2017 Youth Risk Behavior Survey). In 2017, 4.6% of Kansas adults reported that they use e-cigarettes. (2017 Kansas Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System).

The KDHE website has a video hearing and video statements from Dr. Lee Norman, KDHE Secretary and Dr. Farha Ahmed, State Epidemiologist. It also has vaping education video messages that you may find valuable to share with your patients.

For nationwide information, please visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

New Medicare Plan Finder Webinar Offered


The Medicare Plan Finder, the most used tool on Medicare.gov, allows users to shop and compare Medicare Advantage and Part D plans. The updated Medicare Plan Finder provides a personalized experience through a mobile friendly and easy-to-read design that will help users learn about different options and select coverage that best meets their health needs. The new Plan Finder walks users through the Medicare Advantage and Part D enrollment process from start to finish and allows people to view and compare many of the supplemental benefits that Medicare Advantage plans offer. Please share this webinar opportunity with your patients and staff.

New Open Enrollment 2019 Plan Finder Preview and Walk-Through Webinar

Monday, September 30, 2019
12:00 – 1:30 pm                                                                         

Wednesday, October 2, 2019
12:00 – 1:30 pm                                                                         

Access Information for both webinars:

  1. Please call the following number: 1-877-267-1577
  2. Follow the instructions you hear on the phone.
  3. Enter Meeting Number: 999 693 113#
  4. To join this meeting online and view demonstration, go to https://meetings.cms.gov/orion/joinmeeting.do?MTID=a303533006f6faf9a0803b0ba25739ff

Child Safety Week: Sept. 15-21


Every day in America, millions of parents and caregivers take to the road with children in their vehicles. While many children are buckled up in the right car seat for their ages and sizes – nearly half (46 percent) are not, and some aren’t buckled up at all. Child Passenger Safety Week is September 15-21, 2019. Please take this week to share with your patients the importance of child safety by having their car seat/booster seat inspected at a location near them – www.kansascarseatcheck.org.  It is important to register the car seat or booster seat with the seat manufacturer so you can be notified in the event of a recall. Parents and caregivers can find more information on how to choose and use car seats safely at www.ultimatecarseatguide.org.

CDC Health Advisory: Severe Pulmonary Disease Associated with Using E-Cigarette Products


The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued a Health Advisory for Severe Pulmonary Disease Associated with Using E-Cigarette Products. The health advisory provides background information and recommendations for clinicians, public health officials, and the public based on currently available information. Below are recommendations for you from the CDC. Please read the CDC Health Advisory in its entirety.

Recommendations for Clinicians

  1. Report cases of severe pulmonary disease of unclear etiology and a history of e-cigarette product use within the past 90 days to your state or local health department. Reporting of cases may help CDC and state health departments determine the cause or causes of these pulmonary illnesses.
  2. Ask all patients who report e-cigarette product use within the last 90 days about signs and symptoms of pulmonary illness.
  3. If e-cigarette product use is suspected as a possible etiology of a patient’s severe pulmonary disease, obtain detailed history regarding:
  • Substance(s) used: nicotine, cannabinoids (e.g., marijuana, THC, THC concentrates, CBD, CBD oil, synthetic cannabinoids [e.g., K2 or spice], hash oil, Dank vapes), flavors, or other substances
  • Substance source(s): commercially available liquids (i.e., bottles, cartridges, or pods), homemade liquids, and re-use of old cartridges or pods with homemade or commercially bought liquids
  • Device(s) used: manufacturer; brand name; product name; model; serial number of the product, device, or e-liquid; if the device can be customized by the user; and any product modifications by the user (e.g., exposure of the atomizer or heating coil)
  • Where the product(s) were purchased
  • Method of substance use: aerosolization, dabbing, or dripping
  • Other potential cases: sharing e-cigarette products (devices, liquids, refill pods, or cartridges) with others
  1. Determine if any remaining product, including devices and liquids, are available for testing. Testing can be coordinated with the local or state health departments.
  2. Consider all possible causes of illness in patients reporting respiratory and gastrointestinal symptoms and of e-cigarette product use. Evaluate and treat for other possible causes of illness (e.g., infectious, rheumatologic, neoplastic) as clinically indicated. Consider consultation with specialists (pulmonary, infectious disease, critical care, medical toxicology) as appropriate.
  3. Clinical improvement of patients with severe pulmonary disease associated with e-cigarette use has been reported with the use of corticosteroids. The decision to use corticosteroids should be made on a case-by-case basis based on risks and benefits and the likelihood of other etiologies.
  4. Lipoid pneumonia associated with inhalation of lipids in aerosols generated by e-cigarettes has been reported based on the detection of lipid-laden alveolar macrophages obtained by bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) and lipid staining (e.g., oil red O). The decision about whether to perform a BAL should be based on individual clinical circumstances.
  5. Lung biopsies have been performed on some patients. If a lung biopsy is obtained, lipid staining may be considered during pathologic examination, and is best performed on fresh tissue. Routine pathology tissue processing (including formalin-fixation and paraffin-embedding) can remove lipids. Conducting routine tissue processing and histopathologic evaluation is still important. Consider consultation with specialists in pulmonary medicine and pathology to help inform any evaluation plan.
  6. Patients who have received treatment for severe pulmonary disease related to e-cigarette product use should undergo follow-up evaluation as clinically indicated to monitor pulmonary function.

New! Annals of Family Medicine Supplement on Practice Transformation


The Annals of Family Medicine Special Supplement: Lessons From Practice Transformation is now available. It includes editorials, original research, research briefs, special reports and innovations in Primary Care.

Diabetes Programs Available

Health ICT

A listing of diabetes programs across the state are available. Download the two-page flyer and share with your patients and post in your office. The Diabetes Prevention Program offers lifestyle modification designed to keep people with slightly elevated blood sugars from developing diabetes. The Diabetes Self-Management Education and Support program is designed to help people already diagnosed with diabetes better manage their disease through diet, physical activity, medications, and work with their health care team.

Lakin Family Doc Grabs #1 Spot for Advice

Eat This, Not That

This article published in Eat This, Not That, which garners more than 5 million visitors per month, featured five family physician including Dr. Drew Miller of Lakin who grabbed the number one spot with his advice in 50 Things Doctors Would Tell Their Own Mothers.

Parent Health Literacy Opportunities Coming Up

Kansas Head Start Association

There are three Parent Health Literacy training upcoming opportunities coming soon!

The training is free for any staff who work directly with parents and patients, supervisors and program directors. Three CEUs are available for $15.

Attendees will receive the resources needed to teach parents how to use the “What To Do When Your Child Gets Sick” book using effective, evidence based teaching methods.

The KHSA Parent Health Literacy project partners with agencies, medical providers, schools and human services organizations who serve families with young children to provide this important health literacy resource.

For more information, visit Parent Health Literacy Project.

PRIME Registry: Building the Future of Primary Care


The PRIME Registry is unleashing the potential of patient and community data to build better primary care, helping shift the focus beyond individual disease diagnoses to measuring what really matters to patients and clinicians. Join PRIME Registry, and help shape the future of primary care.

PRIME Includes:

  • More Measures that Matter—through PRIME’s improved array of high-value primary care measures with demonstrated connection to improved outcomes and quality of life.
  • PRIME’s quality dashboard helps identify patients with quality gaps and helps practices see how they are doing compared to their peers.
  • The PHATE tool helps identify patients at risk due to social determinants and provides an in-clinic connection to resources in the patient’s community, while also illuminating areas where resources are needed. PHATE has the potential to help guide more personalized risk-assessment and access to patient resources.
  • Special Offer for ABFM Diplomates: American Board of Family Medicine Diplomates are eligible for three years of PRIME enrollment FREE. After the first three years, the price per Diplomate is $260/year.

Learn More:

The project described was supported by Funding Opportunity Number CMS-1L1-15-002 from the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (HHS), Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. The contents provided are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of HHS or any of its agencies.