Making Connections

Dr. Andrea Sandoval knew she wanted to practice medicine in a small Kansas community. But upon finishing her residency in 2010, she wasn’t sure which community would be the best fit.

That’s when Sandoval contacted the Kansas Recruitment and Retention Center, a KU Medical Center program that matches health care professionals with rural Kansas health care organizations. She shared her professional and personal interests with KRRC staff, who suggested she consider a position at Hays Medical Center. Sandoval visited Hays and soon became the town’s newest family physician.

Healing the Body — and the Mind

Ask anyone who’s been affected by cancer, and they’ll tell you about the physical pain that often comes with the disease.

But a team at the University of Kansas Medical Center is focusing on a different aspect of cancer — the emotional stress it afflicts on patients and their families.

Susan Krigel and her colleagues specialize in psycho-oncology — a subset of psychology that focuses on the mental health of individuals affected by cancer — and are now using videoconferencing to provide counseling to individuals across Kansas.

Closer to Home

Twenty years ago, a patient in Garden City or Salina might have faced hours of travel to Wichita for specialized medical care — or perhaps an even longer commute to Kansas City.

But today, technology has helped minimize travel by enabling telemedicine, where video conferencing equipment and other instruments can submit data electronically to providers hundreds of miles away. The University of Kansas Medical Center began working with these tools in 1991, making Kansas one of the first states with telemedicine.

Measuring, Monitoring, Preserving

As Kansas faces continuing declines in groundwater, the University of Kansas has created a powerful new tool for those interested in the state’s crucially important High Plains aquifer system.

The Kansas Geological Survey at KU has launched the High Plains Aquifer Atlas, an interactive atlas featuring more than 70 maps — several animated or interactive — that can be used to investigate topics such as changes in groundwater level, water use and water rights, and climatic conditions.

Training to Save Lives

It’s the nightmare scenario for grain workers: You’re working inside the grain bin when you’re suddenly engulfed by grain. You try to escape, but the grain acts like quicksand, making it impossible to pull yourself out — and difficult for anyone else to lift you out without specialized training.

Tapping into KU student talent

Earlier this year, the staff at the Kansas Cosmosphere and Space Center needed an analysis of the center’s economic impact for planning purposes.

So they turned to Jayhawk Consulting, a University of Kansas program that enlists top students to provide low-cost consulting services to clients throughout Kansas.

Looking below the surface

Oil production, already a significant part of the Kansas economy, could expand and flourish with an improved understanding of the state’s oil reservoirs. That’s why a University of Kansas research consortium is working with energy companies to find and access new oil reserves in Kansas and elsewhere.

Helping children across Kansas

Matt Enyart and Kris Matthews recently spent 18 months traveling the state to train mental health professionals in Positive Behavior Support (PBS). Now, the two University of Kansas researchers are delivering a “PBS-to-Go Box” to 21 community mental health centers so practitioners can help children across Kansas.

PBS is an evidence-based practice that changes behavior and the environment where it happens — in this case, the challenging behavior of high-risk, high-needs kids who often end up in psychiatric residential treatment facilities.

Helping parents help their children

Ten years ago, University of Kansas research psychologist Linda Heitzman-Powell and researcher Jay Buzhardt had an idea to help parents of children with autism who live in communities without access to behavioral therapists: Train those parents remotely, via live TV and online modules.

That idea has evolved into the Online and Applied System for Intervention Skills (OASIS), a clinical service that uses telemedicine to help families, regardless of where they live.

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