Health Care

Matt Trotter / KWGS

Oklahoma U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe is requesting $866,000 in federal funding to help address a long-running nursing shortage in northeastern Oklahoma.

The earmark is for Tulsa Community College’s nursing program to purchase new equipment including patient simulators, renovate lab space and make other adjustments to accommodate 70 more students a year within four years, a 20% increase.

Oklahoma has four fewer nurses per capita than the national average, and TCC Nursing Program Director Lisa Gerow said the nurses the state does have are getting older.

OU

The OU College of Dentistry will open a state-of-the art clinic in Tulsa.

The roughly 5,000-square foot facility on the OU-Tulsa campus is expected to open in June 2022 and will be the first of several planned across the state.

Dr. Raymond Cohlmia is dean of the OU College of Dentistry. He said the new clinics are meant to address a lack of access to affordable, comprehensive care in Oklahoma, not to just churn out additional dentists and hygienists.

Our guest on ST Medical Monday is Dr. Uma Naidoo. She's a board-certified psychiatrist (Harvard Medical School), a professional chef (Cambridge School of Culinary Arts), and a nutrition specialist (Cornell University). She's currently the Director of Nutritional and Lifestyle Psychiatry at Massachusetts General Hospital, and she joins us to talk about her bestselling new book, "This Is Your Brain on Food." As noted by Dr. Walter Willett of Harvard University: "Dr.

(Note: This discussion first aired back in March.) Our guest is Dr. Monica Aggarwal, the director of Integrative Cardiology and Prevention at the University of Florida, where she teaches plant-based nutrition while also performing various mind-body techniques with her students and patients, including yoga and meditation. (You can visit her website here.) Dr. Aggarwal joins us to discuss her latest book, "Body on Fire: How Inflammation Triggers Chronic Illness and the Tools We Have to Fight It," which came out last year, and which she co-wrote with Jyothi Rao.

Matt Trotter / KWGS

A special guest visited Oklahomans celebrating Medicaid expansion taking effect Thursday.

U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra spoke briefly at Friendship Church in north Tulsa. Becerra praised advocates and health officials on hand for their work to get voters to approve expansion last year through a ballot measure.

More than 120,000 uninsured Oklahomans get health coverage Thursday when voter-approved Medicaid expansion takes effect.

Voters narrowly approved a state constitutional amendment last June to make more working adults eligible for the program. It was put on the ballot through the initiative petition process after lawmakers declined to expand Medicaid for years.

Oklahoma Policy Institute has long made the case for Medicaid expansion. Policy Director Carly Putnam and Legislative and Outreach Director Angela Monson said tying health insurance to a job is problematic.

Our guest is Summer Knight, MD, MBA, who's Managing Director in the Life Sciences & Healthcare Consulting practice at Deloitte. Long seen as a thought-leader when it comes to the digital transformation of medical care -- and more broadly, when it comes to intersection of healthcare, business, and technology -- Knight previously worked as a firefighter/paramedic-turned-physician; she was also the founder and CEO of FirecrackerHealth.

Cancer Treatment Centers of America

The Muscogee Nation is buying the shuttered Cancer Treatment Centers of America hospital at 81st Street and U.S. 169 in Tulsa.

The National Council voted 12–0 Thursday to approve a $40 million purchase plan. The tribe will pay $5 million up front and lease the 300,000-square foot facility for $500,000 a month until closing.

Muscogee Nation Secretary of Health Shawn Terry said they’re already figuring out what needs to be upgraded or changed.

"I think we could easily be seeing patients in early July, from an outpatient standpoint," Terry said.

Photo courtesy of Oklahoma Watch

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — More than 51,700 Oklahomans have qualified for Medicaid since enrollment began this week under an expansion of the program that voters approved last year, state officials said Friday.

The Oklahoma Health Care Authority, which oversees the Medicaid program, reported that 51,708 Oklahomans have already qualified for benefits, including about 30,000 from urban areas and more than 21,000 from rural Oklahoma. Enrollment opened June 1, and benefits will begin July 1.

(Note: This show first aired back in March.) Our guest on ST Medical Monday is Dr. Saray Stancic. In 1995, she learned that she had multiple sclerosis. By 2003, she was walking regularly with a cane, had stopped nearly all unnecessary physical activity, and was on several medications. Flash forward to 2010, when she ran a marathon.... How'd she do this? It didn't happen overnight, of course, but -- through a series of dedicated lifestyle changes -- it did happen. Dr.

We are joined on ST Medical Monday by Dr. Shantanu Nundy, a primary care physician, technologist, and business leader who serves as Chief Medical Officer for Accolade, which provides technology-enabled health services to Fortune 500 companies as well as small businesses. Dr.

Our guest is Suzanne Koven, a primary care physician and the inaugural writer-in-residence at Massachusetts General Hospital; she is also a member of the faculty at Harvard Medical School. Koven joins us to discuss her new memoir, "Letter to a Young Female Physician." It's a work that, as the writer Andrew Solomon has noted, "charts both the real and the spurious demands that the medical system makes on those who become doctors and care for us all. [Koven's] memoir is by turns reassuring and disturbing, comical and tragic, hopeful and dire.

On this edition of ST Medical Monday, we discuss a work that takes a careful and long-overdue look at how caregiving and burnout so often go hand-in-hand in this country. Our guest is Kate Washington, an essayist, freelance writer, and food critic based in Northern California. Her new book, which she tells us about, is a memoir/report/study titled "Already Toast: Caregiving and Burnout in America." As was noted by Kirkus Reviews, this book is "a biting critique of how America is failing its unpaid caregivers....

On this edition of ST Medical Monday, we speak with Sunita Puri, author of "That Good Night: Life and Medicine in the Eleventh Hour." Puri is an assistant professor of clinical medicine at the University of Southern California, where she's also the medical director of palliative medicine at the Keck Hospital and Norris Cancer Center. She'll do a free event on the Zoom platform in connection with this insightful book on Wednesday the 28th at 6pm; the event is being co-presented by Hospice of Green Country and Magic City Books.

The Oklahoma Health Care Authority will start taking applications for coverage under Medicaid expansion a month before it takes effect.

The application process will open June 1 at mysoonercare.org, giving newly eligible Oklahomans time to be approved for SoonerCare before coverage begins July 1.

Adults 19 to 64 years old with incomes up to 138% of the federal poverty level will be eligible. That's $17,796 a year for one person or $36,588 for a family of four.

(Note: This show first aired early last year.) On this edition of StudioTulsa, we meet investigative journalist John Carreyrou, a two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter with The Wall Street Journal. He broke the story of the fraud perpetrated by the medical tech company known as Theranos and its charismatic young CEO, Elizabeth Holmes. That story is the basis of his book, "Bad Blood," which he tells us about.

Our guest is Herman Pontzer, an Associate Professor of Evolutionary Anthropology at Duke University and Associate Research Professor of Global Health at the Duke Global Health Institute. An well-known researcher in human energetics and evolution, he joins us to discuss his new book, "Burn: New Research Blows the Lid Off How We Really Burn Calories, Lose Weight, and Stay Healthy." The book draws on Pontzer's groundbreaking studies with hunter-gatherer tribes in order to show how exercise actually **doesn't** increase our metabolism.

KWGS News

The Tobacco Settlement Endowment Trust will help OSU with a new, rural physician residency program.

TSET is committing $2.4 million to the program, with OSU and Stillwater Medical Center covering the rest of the $6.1 million total. 

"It’s going to span three years, five residents per year for a total of 15 residents at the end of three years. The TSET funding, our funding, will pay for resident salaries and other expenses of the program," said TSET Director of Programs Jonás Mata.

The residency program will start July 2022.

Our guest on StudioTulsa Medical Monday is Dr. Monica Aggarwal, the director of Integrative Cardiology and Prevention at the University of Florida, where she teaches plant-based nutrition while also performing various mind-body techniques with her students and patients, including yoga and meditation. (You can visit her website here.) Dr. Aggarwal joins us to discuss her latest book, "Body on Fire: How Inflammation Triggers Chronic Illness and the Tools We Have to Fight It," which came out last year, and which she co-wrote with Jyothi Rao.

Our guest is Olivia Campbell, a journalist specializing in medicine and women who has written for The Guardian, The Washington Post, New York Magazine, and several other publications. Her first book is just out, and she joins us on ST Medical Monday to discuss it. "Women in White Coats: How the First Women Doctors Changed the World of Medicine" tells how three remarkable Victorian women broke down all sorts of barriers in order to become the first women doctors, thereby eventually revolutionizing the way all women receive health care.

Our guest on ST Medical Monday is Dr. Saray Stancic. In 1995, she learned that she had multiple sclerosis. By 2003, she was walking regularly with a cane, had stopped nearly all unnecessary physical activity, and was on several medications. Flash forward to 2010, when she ran a marathon.... How'd she do this? It didn't happen overnight, of course, but -- through a series of dedicated lifestyle changes -- it did happen. Dr.

On this edition of ST Medical Monday, we learn about the National Center for Wellness & Recovery, which is based at the OSU Center for Health Sciences in Tulsa. The mission for this facility, per its website, is "to inspire hope and to develop innovative, science-driven treatment interventions to improve the lives of those afflicted by pain and substance-use disorders." Our guest is Dr. Kelly Dunn, a psychiatrist who is also the Executive Director for Clinical Treatment at the National Center.

Our guest on ST Medical Monday is Dr. T. Colin Campbell, who has been for more than four decades a leading expert on nutrition research in American medicine. His bestselling book from several years ago, "The China Study," grew out of the most comprehensive study of health and nutrition ever conducted, which he led. Dr. Campbell joins us to discuss both his pioneering career and his newest book, "The Future of Nutrition: An Insider's Look at the Science, Why We Keep Getting It Wrong, and How to Start Getting It Right."

On this edition of ST Medical Monday, we offer a discussion of what is commonly referred to as "long-haul syndrome" or "long COVID." Our guest is Dr. Stan Schwartz, who's the chief medical officer of The Zero Card, a digital-health enterprise. He's also a former medical director of Tulsa's Warren Clinic. Dr.

Our guest is Dr. Michael F. Myers, Professor of Clinical Psychiatry at SUNY Downstate Health Sciences University in Brooklyn, New York. He's the author or co-author of several works, including "Why Physicians Die by Suicide." Dr. Myers joins us on StudioTulsa Medical Monday for a discussion of his new book, "Becoming a Doctors' Doctor: A Memoir." As was noted of this reflective and readable work by Dr.

KWGS News file photo

An executive at Oklahoma’s largest health care system told Oklahoma lawmakers he’s wary of Gov. Kevin Stitt’s current plan to privatize the state’s Medicaid program.

On this edition of ST Medical Monday, we learn about "Where It Hurts," a podcast co-produced by Kaiser Health News and St. Louis Public Radio. Our guest is the host of this podcast, investigative journalist Sarah Jane Tribble. Season One of "Where It Hurts" -- subtitled "No Mercy" -- was just completed, and as we learn on today's show, the full season focused on the intricate, far-reaching why and how of the closing of Mercy Hospital in Fort Scott, Kansas.

Photo courtesy of Oklahoma Watch

Governor Kevin Stitt’s plan to outsource management of Oklahoma’s expanded Medicaid program to a for-profit company cleared a procedural hurdle on Tuesday.

The Oklahoma Health Care Authority Board approved on Tuesday spending up to $2.1 billion on contracts next fiscal year with managed care organizations, or MCOs. The 6–3 vote came after public comment from representatives from a handful of health organizations, all of them opposed.

The fight over outsourcing management of Oklahoma’s expanding Medicaid program looms large over the upcoming legislative session.

During a budget hearing Monday for the Oklahoma Health Care Authority, Senate Health and Human Services Committee Chair Greg McCortney (R-Ada) asked CEO Kevin Corbett about $217 million in estimated reserve cash the agency has from increased federal funding during the COVID-19 pandemic.

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — A former employee of Gov. Kevin Stitt’s administration has registered as a lobbyist for a private health care company that’s bidding on a state contract to manage Oklahoma’s Medicaid program.

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