public health

Courtesy Maize USD 266

WICHITA, Kansas — Gracie Dean will graduate from Maize South High School this month, but she’s already working in a field that drew increasing interest during the pandemic.

As a certified nursing assistant at a long-term care facility, she’s among a growing number of young people pursuing careers in health care because of what they’ve witnessed or experienced during COVID-19.

How Sedgwick County Teamed With The Black Community To Fight The Pandemic

May 25, 2021
KLC Journal

The news of her brother’s death wasn’t unexpected. But mid-March 2020 would prove to be an extremely unusual time for Margaret, an African American woman in her 70s living in Wichita, and for her family to bury a loved one.

The novel coronavirus was beginning to reach Kansas. Just hours after Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly issued an emergency declaration in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Kansas recorded its first death linked to the disease.

Carla Eckels / KMUW

Black Kansans have received the COVID-19 vaccine at about half the rate of white Kansans.

Now, as the vaccine rollout continues, there’s been a growing effort to close that gap.

Nadya Faulx / KMUW/File photo

Sedgwick County opened a second mass COVID-19 vaccination clinic today as more residents become eligible to receive the vaccine.

The clinic will run through Saturday at the Central Community Church at 6100 W. Maple in Wichita.

A year into the pandemic, COVID-19 testing has become easier to get — just not necessarily cheaper.

If you go to the right locations, though, you can get a test for free instead of shelling out $100 or more.

For Kansas, sites that offer free testing are listed online, complete with information about wait times and booking.

You don’t have to show any ID or insurance. That eliminates the risk of a wrestling match later over billing.

Price tags matter, even when insurance pays

Condado De Sedgwick: Los Inmigrantes Indocumentados Deben Vacunarse

Feb 15, 2021
Hugo Phan / KMUW

Funcionarios del Condado de Sedgwick están aconsejando a los inmigrantes indocumentados que pueden recibir la vacuna COVID-19 sin exponerse a sí mismos o a sus familias a la vulnerabilidad legal de la aplicación de la ley de inmigración o de persecución civil o penal.

Sometimes, Becky Angell doesn’t even realize she’s started crying.

She’s been a nurse for seven years, and worked in an intensive care unit in Olathe for the past two. She loves her job and is used to seeing people die.

But the past months of caring for one desperately ill COVID-19 patient after another have left her overwhelmed and in tears at the dinner table and on the drive home from work.

Brian Grimmett / Kansas News Service

More than a quarter of Kansans have gotten at least their first dose of the coronavirus vaccine. And starting March 29, all Kansans ages 16 and up will be eligible for the shots.

KMUW/File photo

A mandatory face mask policy and restrictions on restaurants and bars in Sedgwick County will continue for at least another month.

Sedgwick County Health Officer Dr. Garold Minns issued a new health order Wednesday that maintains policies that have been in place since early November.

Sedgwick County Health Department workers set up a COVID-19 vaccine clinic at Intrust Bank Arena.
Brian Grimmett / Kansas News Service

For starters, the COVID-19 vaccine doses intended for Ness County in west-central Kansas landed somewhere else.

“That was my first clue we had a problem,” said Carolyn Gabel, the county’s public health administrator.

Then someone from Dodge City called. Those vials bound for Ness City? They hadn’t been kept as cold as needed. They were no good anymore and needed replacing.