Frankfort Local News

Poll Shows Kentuckians Support Universal Healthcare, But Not Federal Healthcare Law

A new poll shows Kentuckians are becoming increasingly aware of the commonwealth’s health issues and willing to act on them.

The Kentucky Health Issues Poll is conducted annually by the Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky. The latest poll for last year was just released this week and found many Kentuckians worry about childhood obesity and depression.

The poll also found mixed results when it comes to universal health insurance. Every region found 80 percent or more of citizens favored health care for everyone. But less than 50 percent in every region said they were favorable to the health care reform law Congress passed a few years ago.

Foundation CEO Susan Zepeda says the polling shows people approve the concept, but has issues with certain parts of the law.

“I think what they’re telling us is either that they are uncomfortable with the Affordable Care Act, they’re not aware of what it contains, or they think it may have approaches that aren’t consistent with their preferable approaches to solving those access and cost problems,” she says.

Local News Politics

Kentucky Schools Commended For Fighting Obesity

Nearly 300 Kentucky schools have earned special recognition from First Lady Michelle Obama and the US Department of Agriculture for efforts to fight childhood obesity.

Mrs. Obama’s Let’s Move! program just completed its first year and in that time more schools from Kentucky than other state have met the requirements of the U.S. Healthier Schools Challenge by making improvements in the nutritional value of school meals and the quality of physical and health education. Those schools are eligible for financial rewards of up to $2000.

USDA Deputy Secretary Kathleen Merrigan says Kentuckians should be commended for the achievement, but childhood obesity is too big and too complicated to be solved by a federal program.

“We need parents to be saying this is a priority for us. We need school boards and we need local committees. Everyone needs to be a part of this game. It’s not going to be solved in Washington. It’s got to be all hands on deck,” she says.

Seventy-seven Louisville elementary schools are among those in Kentucky that received special recognition for following the U.S. Healthier Schools Challenge.

Despite that, Kentucky has one of the highest childhood obesity rates in the nation. According to one study, 37 percent of Kentucky’s children are overweight or obese.