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K-State Research and Extension
123 Umberger Hall
Manhattan, KS 66506-3401

April 30, 2024

The Community Health Corner

Submitted by Elaine Johannes

book with people seeing the open pages

The National Extension Framework for Health Equity and Well-being recommends using community development strategies and health literacy programs to ensure that everyone has a fair and just opportunity to be as healthy as possible. The following resources help us improve well-being for all, and achieve Healthy Kansas 2030 and Healthy People 2030 objectives.

May is Mental Health Month - New National Strategy for Suicide Prevention.  The U.S. Department of Health & Human Services has released details of a plan of actions across the federal government to address high rates of suicide.  Populations in the United States disproportionately impacted by suicide include non-Hispanic American Indian and Alaska Native youth, middle-aged and older adults, non-Hispanic White males, rural populations, and veterans, among others. Rural communities continue to see increases in suicide rates. According to 2023 data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, suicides in non-urban environments increased 46 percent between 2000 and 2020. The 52pg suicide prevention action plan is here.

May is Stroke Awareness Month, Online HHA trainings in May: Check out the infographics on stroke from the American Heart Association. The tool kit along with other resources on stroke and hypertension are downloadable here: American Stroke Month Toolkit Resources | American Heart Association.

Also, KDHE is conducting online Healthy Heart Ambassador (HHA) trainings for CHWs, Extension agents, etc. on May 10 and May 17. Participants should sign up for both part 1 and part 2 to become a certified in HHA.  HHA is an important feature of KSRE's HAPp (Hypertension Awareness and Prevention Program).  Extension agents wanting to be trained by KDHE for the Healthy Heart Ambassador (HAA) coaching program, register online for both sessions:

May 10th 9am-12pm
May 17th 9am-12pm

Rural-Urban Mortality Gap Widens: The Kaiser Family Fund (KFF) Health News reports that a new review of USDA Data shows that the gap in mortality between urban and rural areas is growing. According to the report, rural Americans ages 25 to 54 are dying of natural causes such as chronic diseases and cancer at wildly higher rates than their age-group peers in urban areas. The USDA’s  “Nature of the Rural-Urban Mortality Gap” report  (March, 2024) is available here.

 CDC Announces National Health Observances for May

National Physical Fitness and Sports Month
National Bike Month
Older Americans Month
Mental Health Awareness Month
Better Sleep Month
May 12–18: National Women’s Health Week
May 13–19: National Bike to Work Week            

For more information, contact Elaine Johannes, ejohanne@ksu.edu; and Stephanie Gutierrez, smgutier@k-state.edu