Kansas health officials concerned with public health trends amid Senate Bill 40 changes


Tuesday, March thirtieth 2021, 3:57 PM CDT

Up to date:

Governor Kelly last week signed Senate Bill 40. A part of the adjustments to the invoice embrace limiting powers of native well being officers associated to public well being orders whereas permitting elected officers to intervene. 

Dr. Lee Norman says he thinks the legislature is making an attempt to alter what has been profitable, century-long public well being practices by interfering with case investigation and speak to tracing.

“Taking away the authorities of the state well being officers equivalent to myself and the county well being officers and leaving it to untrained medical individuals to make these selections I feel may be very quick sided and ill-advised.” Dr. Norman stated.

Dr. Norman says it’s necessary to recollect COVID-19 isn’t the one well being emergency in Kansas. Proper now we’re seeing a syphilis outbreak together with different main wellness points.

“We’ve got over 400 Hepatitis A circumstances in lower than a 12-month interval and we usually have 10. All of those take the identical public well being measures of case investigation and contract tracing and it’s not a time to throw a bunch of obstacles in entrance of public well being officers,” Dr. Norman warned. 

Dr. Norman says with the adjustments made in SB 40, it is going to be more durable to recruit and retain public well being representatives for communities all throughout the state.

“I feel the legislature ought to keep concerned and have conversations, however not do what it may do to derail long-standing, very profitable public well being interventions,” Dr. Norman stated.

Individuals we talked to in Wichita as we speak say they hope medically skilled professionals have extra authority over our well being than elected officers.

“Let’s say you have chose me, would you belief me or would you belief a physician? It’s widespread sense actually,” says Henry Vo, Wichita resident.

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