Day: March 3, 2017

HIPAA interpretation leads to incomplete information in police CAD calls

The Cowley County consolidated 911 dispatch center came under scrutiny during a recent meeting of the City Commission of Arkansas City. After the meeting, Ark City Daily Bytes requested and inspected numerous emails, spanning more than a year and a half, from local government officials in order to verify claims made that night. The findings of this investigation are shared in this and future stories. Citizens interested in speaking out on this issue are urged to contact their county commissioner. Contact information can be found at www.cowleycounty.org/commission and a map of the commission districts is located at www.cowleycounty.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/09/Commission_Districts.pdf. To HIPAA or not? The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) of 1996 is a set of laws that provide data privacy and security provisions for safeguarding medical information. HIPAA also establishes strong punitive measures for violators of the law, including both civil and criminal penalties, so public agencies often are very sensitive when it comes to managing the risks of inadvertently releasing privileged health data. Dispatchers employed by Cowley County Emergency Communications (CCEC) were instructed last year by CCEC Director Carl Fortner to type “HIPAA,” instead of patients’ names, in their Computer Aided Dispatch (CAD) software’s data fields. In addition to patient names, other “personally identifiable information” Fortner instructed dispatchers to leave out of the CAD system included dates of birth and Social Security information. However, this instruction caused some...

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Grouse Creek Academy provides hands-on training, welcoming atmosphere

In an effort to announce the Grouse Creek Academy, Brian Black and Nathan McClure invited Ark City Daily Bytes to be among the first to use the range. McClure, who has an extensive history within the firearms training industry, gave me some hands-on firearms instruction when I visited the property March 2. The facility still is a work in progress, but the overall vision the men have for the academy is taking shape — literally, as they carve away at the landscape to create the safety berms and backstop. Both Black and McClure appear to be positive-minded in their strides taken thus far to create the academy. This includes attending a national seminar, during which they were able to garner the support of the industry in an impressive fashion. I have a limited background with firearms. Other than the instruction I have received from my husband, I have no education in shooting. While I have more experience with a CZ 75, I will admit that experience has been limited, as well. When range time was mentioned, I was a bit hesitant. But McClure’s steady confidence instantly put me at ease. My goal for my range time was simply to hit a steel target at 20 yards while shooting a .22-caliber pistol. For comparison, the distance test to procure a concealed carry permit is only 15 yards. The .22 was...

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Grouse Creek Academy, first of its kind in Kansas, set to open soon locally

Cowley County soon will be home to a brand-new firearms training facility, thanks to the vision of county native Brian Black. The facility, Grouse Creek Academy, is being constructed on Black’s family property on Grouse Creek Road. “I grew up in this house … I learned how to shoot out there,” Black said. The house will be converted into classroom space in which students can enjoy a comfortable learning environment. Eventually, it will be equipped with a simulator, which would allow teachers to have classes and simulations, even during bad weather. The building also will house restroom facilities. The training facility is located at 17186 Grouse Creek Road. Black giving back Black said the idea came to him when he was trying to find a way to give back to the community. It was his idea to create a nonprofit facility to help both the local community and the larger surrounding area. The three key words Black and Nathan McClure have built their business model on are “safe,” “clean,” and “professional.” The family-friendly facility not only will provide an environment in which to practice various aspects of shooting sports, but it also will promote fishing and conservation. “It’s not dreaming,” McClure said. “It’s feasible.” Paying it forward Black and McClure are working to have Grouse Creek Academy designated as a 501(c)3 nonprofit, with the intent of putting any funds that...

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Lions Club helps village home of international Cowley College student Melly

One international Cowley College student will return home from America with more than just an education. Simion Melly, a native of Kenya, Africa, was raised in a small village that does not have a naturally occurring source of clean water. He grew up in Sinendet village, which lies 40 miles away from Elderet. About 1,000 people live in the village, including his mother and father. Melly is the youngest of 12 children. His parents still live in the village, where they raise cows and goats. The animals have to be walked to the town of Elderet to be sold, a journey that can take three days on foot. The village has a hand-dug well, but many village residents suffer from dysentery, cholera or malaria. Water that comes from this well still must be boiled in order to be considered safe to drink. Lions Club helps Melly currently lives with Sue Lancaster, a member of the local Early Birds Lions Club. The Lions Club at the international level helps to provide clean water to regions of the world where no clean water can be found. “I leave Lions Club books around the house,” Lancaster said. “Melly came to me one day and said ‘Mum’ — that’s what he calls me — ‘do you think that they can help me?’” She contacted the second district governor of the Lions Club, Patrick...

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The wonder of vinegar: Household cleaner, laundry aid, rug restorer

Household cleaner, laundry aid, rug restorer Did you ever wonder how our grandmothers cleaned their homes before harsh chemical cleaners were available? One of the most versatile cleaning products available is regular white distilled vinegar. Vinegar not only is versatile, but it is very affordable. A gallon-sized jug of vinegar usually is less than $3. But what can vinegar possibly clean? Here are just a few things that this natural cleaner can do. Erase ballpoint pen marks Every child goes through a phase in which he or she uses walls as a huge canvas for coloring creations. Should a child use ink on walls, simply dab the wall with some full-strength vinegar, using a cloth or sponge. It may take a few passes, but the ink should come right off the wall. Restore rugs Is the carpet more than 3 years old? Does it seem dingy? Try using a clean brush or push broom dipped in a solution of 1 cup of vinegar for each 1 gallon of water. The solution is safe to air-dry on the carpet and should bring new life to the tired-looking areas. Remove carpet stains For more stubborn stains in carpet, try using a mixture of salt and vinegar. Rub carpet stains with a mixture of 4 Tablespoons of salt dissolved in 1 cup of white vinegar. Let the solution dry on the carpet...

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