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Monday, June 11, 2018

From the KDHE

Press Release


KDHE Announces Recipients of Waste Tire Recycling Grants  
51 individual grants distributed to recipients across Kansas

TOPEKA –  The Kansas Department of Health and Environment’s (KDHE) Bureau of Waste Management has announced the recipients of waste tire recycling grants. These annual solid waste grants are awarded to municipalities and school districts across the state. The grants total nearly $468,000 for 2018.
The waste tire recycling grants go toward funding safe surfacing at playgrounds, running tracks, picnic tables and benches made from waste tires. This year’s 51 individual waste tire recycling grants range from $209 to $61,213.50. The grants are funded through a 25-cent tax paid on the purchase of new tires. The list of grantees can be found at http://www.kdheks.gov/waste/grants/SFY18WTGSpreadsheetFinal.pdf.
For more information on KDHE’s waste reduction grant opportunities and application procedures, visit www.kdheks.gov/waste.  





Measles Outbreak Declared Over

TOPEKA – Nearly three months after the initial outbreak of measles at a Johnson County day care, the Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) declares the outbreak over. The conclusion of the outbreak was made official on May 28, after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention provided final specimen testing results. A measles outbreak is considered over when no additional cases have been identified, and two incubation periods (42 days) have passed. Counties affected by the outbreak included Johnson, Linn, and Miami.

“We are happy and relieved that this outbreak has concluded,” said KDHE State Epidemiologist Dr. Farah Ahmed. “Because of the unfortunate circumstance of this starting in a daycare environment where many children were too young to be vaccinated, we and local health departments were challenged to track those infected and make sure the public took appropriate precautions. Most people followed instructions, and we were able to contain the outbreak without major health complications,” Dr. Ahmed said.

KDHE emphasizes that the best way to prevent measles and many other diseases is through vaccinations. KDHE provides vaccines through a network of local public and private providers across the state, through the Vaccines for Children (VFC) program. VFC is a federally-funded program that provides vaccines at no cost to children who might not otherwise be vaccinated because of inability to pay. A child is eligible for the VFC program if he/she is younger than 19 years of age and is one of the following:
·         Medicaid-eligible
·         Uninsured
·         Underinsured (has insurance that does not cover vaccines, does not cover a particular vaccine or has a dollar cap on vaccines and that cap has been reached)
·         American Indian or Alaska Native

There is no cost for the vaccine; however, there may be an office visit charge or an administration fee. For a list of Kansas VFC providers, visit http://www.kdheks.gov/immunize/vfc_program.html.
Uninsured adults may find vaccines available at Federally Qualified Health Centers or Rural Health Centers and at some local health departments. Many private providers and pharmacies provide vaccine for insured people. HealthMap Vaccine Finder is a resource for locating vaccines in communities https://vaccinefinder.org/



KDHE Posts Overview of Plan and Invites Comments for VW Settlement  
Comment period runs from June 1 – July 2


TOPEKA – Beginning, Friday, June 1, the Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) will post online the Kansas Plan for the Volkswagen Environmental Mitigation Trust and will collect comments on the content through July 2. The trust was created pursuant to the 2016 U.S. Department of Justice partial consent decree to settle claims against the automaker Volkswagen. As part of the settlement, Volkswagen is required to allocate $2.7 billion toward an Environmental Mitigation Trust to fund diesel emission reduction projects.

In 2017, KDHE was designated as the lead agency to act on behalf of the trust for the state of Kansas. This includes distributing funds totaling more than $15 million, which may be used on eligible projects ranging from the replacement of older diesel-fueled equipment to the purchase and installation of electric vehicle charging stations.

To view the plan and for more information about the Volkswagen Environmental Mitigation Trust, visit www.kdheks.gov/bar/air-monitor/dieselgrant/dieselvw.html. To submit comments via email, send to kdhe.ksvwsettlement@ks.gov. Comments must be received by July 2.

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