Lee Norman, secretary of the Kansas Department of Health and Environment, said wearing masks, improving testing capacity and isolating people infected with COVID-19 was the best approach during the pandemic as long as there is no approved vaccine. (Sherman Smith/Kansas Reflector)

KDHE shifting gears on public report of site-specific COVID-19 clusters in Kansas

BY: - September 23, 2020

KDHE is altering metrics used to place COVID-19 outbreaks on a weekly list of site-specific clusters in Kansas.

U.S. House passes deal on stopgap funding, avoids government shutdown

BY: - September 22, 2020

House and Senate leaders reached a bipartisan agreement Tuesday night to pass a three-month funding stopgap, averting a government shutdown in the midst of a pandemic and a short time before the November elections. In a 359-57 vote, the House passed H.R. 8337, which extends federal government funding until Dec. 11, when lawmakers would have […]

Vicki Schmidt, the Kansas commissioner of insurance, attended a legislative committee meeting Monday for endorsement of the $535,000 sale of the vacant Woman's Club of Topeka building on the National Register of Historic Places. (Tim Carpenter/Kansas Reflector)

Legislative committee endorses sale of historic Topeka building for $535,000

BY: - September 22, 2020

Sale of the Woman's Club of Topeka building for $535,000 to a group planning to renovate the historic structure is another step closer to reality.

Services for Kansas crossover youth slowed by lack of data, interagency collaboration

BY: - September 22, 2020

TOPEKA — A leader for the Kansas agency charged with maintaining the state’s child protective programs said youths involved in the child welfare system and juvenile justice system face unique challenges not often reflected in data collected by various state agencies. Department for Children and Families deputy secretary Tanya Keys said the lack of integrated […]

Kathy Winters, facing, hugs Cindy Poe during a hearing on foster care Monday in which they described the personal agony of having their grandchildren placed in foster care by the state of Kansas. (Sherman Smith/Kansas Reflector)

Heartbroken grandparents make emotional appeals for Kansas foster care reform

BY: - September 22, 2020

Foster parents, extended family members cut off from grandchildren share their pain with members of Kansas Legislature.

Gov. Laura Kelly says Kansas failed in make or break moment to slow COVID-19

BY: - September 21, 2020

TOPEKA — Gov. Laura Kelly on Monday expressed alarm at rapidly worsening COVID-19 numbers in Kansas and blamed Republican legislative leaders for standing in the way of a statewide mask mandate. The Kansas Department of Health and Environment has confirmed 66 deaths related to COVID-19 in the past week, bringing the pandemic’s statewide total to […]

Kansas organizations advocating for people with disabilities and elderly individuals are urging Lee Norman, left, secretary of the Kansas Department of Health and Environment, and Gov. Laura Kelly to resume and expand public disclosure of COVID-19 clusters. (Tim Carpenter/Kansas Reflector)

Disabled, elderly advocates eager for KDHE reporting of site-specific COVID-19 outbreaks

BY: - September 21, 2020

Advocates of elderly and disabled people in Kansas are urging KDHE to resume facility-specific reporting on spread of COVID-19 infection.

Former President Donald Trump, shown here delivering his acceptance speech for the 2020 GOP presidential nomination, endorse Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt, a candidate for governor in Kansas. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Trump says he’ll announce Supreme Court pick by Friday or Saturday

BY: - September 21, 2020

President Donald Trump said Monday that he would announce a replacement for the late U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg by either Friday or Saturday. During a morning interview on “Fox and Friends,” the president said the administration wanted to pay its respects to Ginsburg, who died Friday night from complications with cancer, before […]

Two Kansas lawmakers walking long road to legalizing medicinal marijuana

BY: - September 21, 2020

Kansas legislators David Haley and Gail Finney are optimistic the 2021 Legislature can advance a bill legalizing medical marijuana.

Rural hospitals see funding, testing strategy among biggest pandemic hurdles

BY: - September 20, 2020

TOPEKA — Amid a pandemic that has drastically impacted the way rural hospitals provide services, telehealth has provided patients and staff at Smith County Memorial Hospital desperately needed services and support. Allen Van Driel, CEO of the northern Kansas hospital, said medical professionals been able to connect with specialists from distant sites to provide services […]

Republican U.S. Senate candidate Roger Marshall endorses reforming Social Security benefits for people 10 years or more away from retiring, while Democratic Senate candidate Barbara Bollier opposes cuts to Social Security. (Submitted)

Marshall says Republicans were elected to confirm Trump pick for Supreme Court

BY: - September 19, 2020

TOPEKA — U.S. Rep. Roger Marshall and Kansas Sen. Barbara Bollier battled Saturday in their first debate over the merits of fast-tracking a replacement for Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg or waiting until after the November elections. Ginsburg’s death on Friday ensured high court confirmations would become a central issue in the race to […]

The Kansas unemployment rate in November increased for the first time in six months to 5.6%. The rate in November 2019 was 3.1%, but the COVID-19 pandemic pushed the rate to a high of 11.9% in April (Tim Carpenter/Kansas Reflector)

Unemployment rate in Kansas declines to 6.9% in August

BY: - September 19, 2020

The COVID-19 influenced unemployment rate in Kansas fell to 6.9% in August, a drop of 0.3%. It's still well above the 3.1% rate in August 2019.