WRITER: Mackenzie Clark

Healthy Outlook: Kansas’ health ranking reveals some surprises, good and bad

Breathe easy, Kansas, with the knowledge that the state has less dust in the wind — that is, relatively low air pollution — compared to other states. Just make sure you brush and floss. The state only has 49.7 dentists per 100,000 population. These numbers are according to America’s Health Rankings, an annual report from the United Health Foundation. The 2018 report, released on Thursday, shows Kansas ...

Healthy Outlook: Healthier gift options your family won’t hate

My holiday spirit tends to fluctuate. Some years, I’m a Sugar Plum Fairy; others, I’m a Grinch. (This year, I’m going a secular Unicorn route.) But you can expect a couple of things from me annually like clockwork: overdramatic lamentation of the cold and the short, dark, soul-stifling days, and some early strategery about gifts that may or may not pan out. Although my family has learned to love my ...

Healthy Outlook: I had my brain waves balanced; here’s what happened

Lawrence psychotherapist Ed Bloch is used to losing clients after just a few sessions — but that’s OK with him. It’s just the nature of Cereset, the new brain wave balancing technology he offers out of his new office at 5040 Bob Billings Parkway, Suite A1, near the western edge of Lawrence. Five sessions is often all it takes before his clients no longer need to return. (There is a bit of homework, but ...

Heartland Community Health Center announces a second interim CEO

Story updated at 5:17 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 27: Heartland Community Health Center on Tuesday announced a new interim CEO, Julie Boden Schmidt, as it continues the search for a permanent leader. According to a news release from the Lawrence safety net clinic, Schmidt served at the National Association of Community Health Centers in the Washington, D.C., area for eight years, leading its Training and Technical ...

Summer meal program sees spike in attendance in 2018

The Douglas County area's summer meal program this year served the most meals it has since it was introduced in 2015 — 48,955, to be exact. The program — branded Fuel Up 4 Summer — provides free lunches for anyone ages 1-18, and it also serves breakfast and dinner at some of the 11 sites in Lawrence and Lecompton. Its goal is to fill the gap when schools aren’t in session so that kids whose families ...

Healthy Outlook: Lawrence, Douglas County health coalition LiveWell celebrates 10 years

How do you make a splash and let people know about your new organization? A news release, flyers or a Facebook page are a few options. Or you could bring nearly 3,000 people to the University of Kansas’ Shenk Recreational Sports Complex for the “World’s Largest Community Workout.” That’s what LiveWell Lawrence did in 2009, shortly after a grant from the Kansas Health Foundation allowed the ...

Healthy Outlook: Veterans Affairs town hall offers updates on health care in eastern Kansas

Lawrence veteran Mike Kelly was pleased to see many resources shared with those in attendance at a Veterans Affairs town hall Thursday at the Lied Center. However, he pointed out that he thought an important one was missing from the speakers' presentations. “They have a nurse triage line,” Kelly said. “These nurses can go through 20 questions and tell you, ‘You’re not going to die; come in ...

Healthy Outlook: Lawrence doctor bucks insurance to focus on patients

Imagine that you go get a haircut, with the agreement that the stylist will bill you for it. You walk out of the salon, turning heads on your merry way. But when you get the bill a week later, it’s double or triple what you expected to pay, and the shampoo that you thought was included in the price of the haircut is tacked on as an extra charge. You obviously can’t return the haircut, and now you’re in ...

Healthy Outlook: Lawrence practitioner harnesses music to help people heal

A recently certified local practitioner has the healing power of music down to a science. Longtime Lawrence resident P. Allen Macfarlane, 71, was a research scientist for the Kansas Geological Survey for 34 years. After retiring from that position, he taught middle school science at Topeka Collegiate School. He’s now going back to work in quite a different field, but for him, it’s a natural transition. ...

Healthy Outlook: How I’m dragging myself back into a fitness routine

An object at rest stays at rest. I think the first law of motion applies to people, too. Lately, my mind’s attempts to push my body to exercise have been met with a resounding “ugh,” or at times, “meh.” I’ve stopped even trying to muster mental excuses: “I’m not working out today because I’m not.” It’s clearly a bad attitude, and it’s a tough mindset to break. I know my body feels ...

Healthy Outlook: I tried a home-delivery meal service; here’s how it went

I’ve spiraled beyond being a fan of convenience. Quick, easy solutions have become a necessity in my life. That’s why the idea of delicious prepared meals delivered to my front door was so appealing to me. First, I’m not an excellent cook. I get by, but, for the most part, I can’t stand the heat so I stay out of the kitchen. Second, the unpredictability of life never ceases to thwart my grand plans ...

Healthy Outlook: Specialized therapists who left Bert Nash open DBT Center of Lawrence

About three months after giving their 30 days’ notice at Bert Nash Community Mental Health Center, a team of specialized therapists met with the Journal-World to discuss their new business, the DBT Center of Lawrence. The group of six, who spent roughly 50 years combined at Bert Nash, are practitioners of dialectical behavior therapy, or DBT. They are largely focused on the future; however, they also shed ...

Healthy Outlook: Breast cancer by the numbers

Most people have some personal connection to breast cancer, whether they know someone who has battled it or are themselves survivors — a term the Susan G. Komen foundation uses to describe a person “from the moment a breast cancer diagnosis is confirmed.” But for every one person we know, how many others are fighting? How many more will likely face the disease in their lifetimes? And how can we improve ...

Healthy Outlook: Lawrence eye doctor wants to start World Sight Day trend

Dr. Scott Hickman has traveled the world helping people see, and now he has a new idea to help those in need in the town where he was born and raised. Hickman, an ophthalmologist, is hoping to start a trend in his profession, both locally and nationally. He’s set aside Thursday, Oct. 11, to provide a free eye clinic to the uninsured in Douglas County. Studying abroad Hickman said he’s always been ...

Healthy Outlook: CBD products could help treat what ails you

It’s not a big surprise anymore for Brandon Zoeller when customers return to his store without the walkers or knee braces they used in their first visits — but he said it’s still one of the most rewarding parts of the job. Zoeller and his wife, Heather, opened the doors of their franchise of CBD American Shaman at 1530 W. Sixth St., Suite C, on July 6. Since then, a lot of folks have sampled their wares, ...

Healthy Outlook: Ketamine a new depression treatment option in Lawrence

For those who have battled depression, finding a treatment option that actually works can be life-changing. That makes it all the more difficult when symptoms begin to creep back in. Lawrence psychiatrist Dr. Hiten Soni has experienced this firsthand. He’s familiar with patients’ tiresome trials of drug after drug to achieve little to no effect, or an effect that’s good for a while, but doesn’t last. ...

Healthy Outlook: Pets can benefit our health

It never ceases to amaze me to see pet lovers’ reactions when their beloved furballs come up in conversation. Even the toughest facades tend to crumble — at least a little bit — at the mere mention of the loving counterparts that make so many of us whole. But besides the hugs, kisses, snuggles, cuddles and belly scratches, and beyond the wet noses, wagging tails, kneading paws, nuzzling furry faces and ...

Healthy Outlook: Fall runners' guide 2018

It’s almost fall, if you can believe that, which means here in Lawrence we can eventually expect a nice week or so between the 90-degree days and the first freeze. Hopefully, some of these events fall within that week. There are a lot of runs and races planned in the coming months — some longtime annual traditions and some much newer. A key to the events with repeat sponsors: AAR = event sponsored by ...

Headquarters open house highlights suicide prevention events this month

September is National Suicide Prevention Awareness Month, and some events around Lawrence are planned in its honor. Among them is a rare peek behind the scenes at Headquarters Counseling Center. The 24/7 crisis center that operates in Lawrence — and takes calls from those in need of help throughout the state of Kansas — is opening its doors on World Suicide Prevention Day, which is Monday, Sept. 10. The ...

Healthy Outlook: Physician offers telemedicine services in new Lawrence clinic

The future of medicine is here and now. More specifically, it’s at a new clinic near 25th and Iowa streets. Dr. Fatima Khan has spent the last five years working with Veterans Affairs, and she recently decided to open a private practice in Lawrence. However, the care she provides won’t be limited to the patients she sees within the walls of her clinic — she is also integrating telemedicine. House ...