Gov. Brownback outlines initiatives to improve rural health

Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback (AP Photo/Orlin Wagner)
Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback (AP Photo/Orlin Wagner)

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) – Gov. Sam Brownback has outlined two long-term initiatives designed to bring more doctors to rural Kansas.

Brownback outlined a proposal Friday to set aside $5 million in state funds to provide seed money for new doctor-training programs at Kansas hospitals. He and Lt. Gov. Jeff Colyer said the goal is to attract more federal and private dollars.

The governor also announced during a Statehouse news conference that he’s forming a task force to draft a plan for establishing a privately funded school to train osteopaths in Kansas. Osteopaths are doctors who generally focus on providing primary care and preventative medicine.

Brownback noted that Kansas has had a shortage of medical personnel in rural areas for decades and that 92 of the state’s 105 counties are considered medically underserved.