Science and Technology

Amy Mayer / Harvest Public Media

This week, we'll hear how scientists are using microbes to increase crop yields, and learn about a new wetland in Columbia.

missouri capitol
Ryan Famuliner / KBIA

The Department of Health and Senior Services has appointed Missouri’s first dental director in more than a decade.

Dr. Ray Storm is a dentist from the St. Louis area. He founded Give Kids a Smile, a nonprofit that holds annual free dental clinics for children in need. The Missouri Oral Health Coalition helped raise the funds to reinstate the position in the state. Gary Harbison, the coalition’s director, said he’s pleased with Storm’s appointment.

bird
Gary Grigsby / KBIA News

Listening to birds sing and talk is probably something we all take for granted at times.

The University of Missouri Research Reactor (MURR) is changing its maintenance schedule to ensure global supply of radioisotopes does not run out.

MU Nuclear Research Reactor
University of Missouri

The University of Missouri has pushed back a two-week maintenance project on its research reactor because of a disruption in the supply of radioactive isotopes used to detect and treat some medical conditions.

Marcus Mo / Flickr

The 2013 edition of the Missouri Hunger Atlas is a 145-page-strong document and, according to one of its main creators, has more than you'd ever want to know about the extent of food insecurity in the Show-Me State. Missouri is in the top ten of states with highest number of food-insecure residents in the nation.

Kansas City health officials say at least two area children have lead poisoning from a contaminated cosmetic product commonly used in Myanmar.

The Kansas City Star reports (http://bit.ly/1fIOfrj ) the product, which is called Thanakha, is a yellowish paste made from tree bark that is worn on the face and arms to treat acne or as a sunscreen.

If you're a 38-year-old Missourian living in Pemiscot County in the Bootheel, an Affordable Care Act "gold" insurance plan will cost you at least $418 per month, before subsidies. If you're a 38-year-old living in Kansas City, a similar plan will cost you about $263 per month. 

Here's why:

Kristofor Husted / KBIA

Gov. Jay Nixon has selected the chief medical officer for the Missouri Department of Mental Health to lead the state's Medicaid health care program.

Joe Parks will take over as director of the MO HealthNet Division of the Department of Social Services starting Dec. 16. He replaces Ian McCaslin, who left that position in May after serving as director since August 2007.

Nixon announced the new Medicaid director Friday.

InspiredHomeFitness / Flickr

Obesity has increased dramatically in the United States over the past several decades.

Kristofor Husted / KBIA

Missouri’s Department of Natural Resources approved the permit for a 73-acre frac sand mine in Ste. Genevieve County Thursday.  The department also denied a request for an official hearing on the proposed mine owned by Summit Proppants.

Several people who live near the proposed mine have been fighting the approval of the permit for most of the year. They’ve cited health, environmental and quality of life concerns. Ste. Genevieve county resident Mike Miller says they are disappointed but will continue to fight the mine in the legal system.

missouri capitol
Jacob Fenston / KBIA

Health insurers serving the individual and small group markets in Missouri can continue selling plans that would have been canceled by Dec. 31 for not meeting the requirements outlined in the Affordable Care Act, according to the state's Department of Insurance. 

Starting in 2014, all health insurance plans must include some services from all of the law's "10 essential health benefit" categories. The broadly defined categories include, among others: maternity care, behavioral health treatments, prescription drugs, laboratory services and preventive services.

Insurance companies have now sent cancelation notices to millions of Americans who hold health plans that did not meet those requirements.  Following nationwide criticism, President Barack Obama proposed on Nov. 15 that the administration would allow the canceled plans to remain effective until the end of 2014.

river
paukrus / flickr

The Missouri Department of Natural Resources is looking for public input on its list of impaired bodies of water. 

tree
Gary Grigsby / KBIA News

As you watch a a tree grow you can grow attached to it.

hospital room
Fotos GOVBA / flicker

MU Health Care clinics have reached the top level of advanced electronic medical records. 

MU medical students showcase research

Nov 15, 2013
hospital interior
fotos GOVBA / flickr

The MU Health System showcased hundreds of students’ year-long research Thursday at its annual Health Sciences Research Day.                

Associate Dean for the MU School of Medicine Dr. Jerry C. Parker said the research day is one of his favorite days of the year because it showcases and honors medical students’ hard work.

“It takes a lot of energy and work and dedication to produce research findings, and just to see the creativity and excellent thought process that has gone into some of these student research projects is really exciting,” Parker said.

MU researchers make soybeans healthier

Nov 15, 2013
drought farm field soybeans
Camille Phillips / Harvest Public Media

On November 7, the Food and Drug Administration made a preliminary decision. That decision stated trans fats as unsafe in food. Trans fats are found in most processed foods.

Alan Cleaver / flickr

Out of nearly 28,000 Missourians who have completed the applications for insurance through HealthCare.gov, only 751 so far have chosen insurance plans. The online marketplace, a key part of the Affordable Care Act, opened for enrollment on Oct. 1. Technological glitches made signing up nearly impossible in its first couple of weeks. 

MU partners with GPI for medical advances

Nov 12, 2013
jesse jall on mu campus
cindyt7070 / Flickr

Some hearts could be beating a little easier after news that medical advances could be coming to Columbia. 

Warming centers and shelters open in Columbia

Nov 7, 2013

Warming centers and shelters have now opened in Columbia, according to the Columbia/Boone County Department of Public Health and Human Services. It has 14 buildings hosting people during winter months. Representatives said 8 of those buildings are warming centers open during business hours.

·         ARC (Activity and Recreation Center) at 1707 West Ash Street

·         Armory Sports and Community Center at 701 East Ash Street

·         Boone County Government Center at 801 East Walnut

pills
acephotos1 / dreamstime

Missouri's Medicaid program will receive $26 million through a national settlement with a pharmaceutical company.

tree
Gary Grigsby / KBIA

 

In much of mid-Missouri during June, July and August, rainfall was well below normal. 

Amy Mayer / Harvest Public Media

On this week's show, we'll hear about a program that funds pork research, and hear about the opening of a new Ronald McDonald house.

Every time a hog is sold, farmers contribute to the National Pork Check-off. The program each year raises tens of millions of dollars that goes to the National Pork Board, which is charged with improving the $20 billion dollar industry. Some of that money funds scientific research. But as Harvest Public Media’s Amy Mayer reports, though all producers contribute, they aren't all satisfied with the research.

Midwest food retailers may be impacted by another recall of chicken and ham products by Garden-Fresh Foods of Milwaukee, Wis. The company announced last week its recall of 103,080 pounds of ready-to-eat food possibly contaminated with the bacteria Listeria monocytogenes. This is the company’s third recall in the last two months.

wwarby / Flickr

A new $15 million penguin exhibit is opening its doors at the Kansas City Zoo.

Durrie Bouscaren for Harvest Public Media

On this week's show, we'll hear about efforts to construct wind turbines across the Midwest, and learn why Columbia's "Big Tree" is getting some much needed TLC.

Drug Take Back Program visits Columbia

Oct 24, 2013

The Drug Take Back Program is collecting prescription drugs today in Columbia. Ryan Worley, Coordinator of the Youth Community Coalition, is in charge of the program. He said unused prescription drugs can sometimes be accessible to and abused by family members if they are not disposed of properly.

“These are not safe to abuse. They are drugs they are powerful, and they should only be taken the way a doctor prescribes them,” Worley said.

Durrie Bouscaren for Harvest Public Media

 

The rolling plains of Midwest farm country are being tapped for their natural resources again. This time, though, the bounty would be wind energy, instead of corn, wheat or soybeans.

Mo. hospital group charts admission improvements

Oct 24, 2013
hospital room
jodimarr / Flickr

The Missouri Hospital Association says there has been a decline in the number of hospital admissions for preventable issues.

MU receives grant for nuclear reactor research

Oct 23, 2013
KBIA

The Curators of the University of Missouri received a $1.8 million federal grant that will support research related to the production of small nuclear reactors (SMRs) at Ameren’s Callaway County plant in Fulton.

Pages