Decrease (-) Restore Default Increase (+)
Bookmark and Share

Health Policy Agenda

Norton Healthcare advocates a health policy agenda to improve the health of adults and children.

Kentucky faces significant health issues. (1 being the best out of 50)

  • Obesity ranking: 44 out of 50, with 31.5 percent of population
  • Diabetes ranking: 41 out of 50, with 10.8 percent of population
  • Smoking rank: 50 out of 50, with 30.4 percent of population
  • Kentucky is also ranked the worst in the country for child abuse and neglect deaths

Kentucky has a long and difficult road ahead to improve these statistics and the overall health of our state.

Norton Healthcare has a mission to provide quality health care to all those we serve, in  a manner that responds to the needs of our communities. We are committed to being the region’s most comprehensive, strongest and preferred health care organization, setting the stand for quality and caring.

Choose a health policy issue or health condition from the list below to see how Norton Healthcare is contributing to improving the health of Kentucky.

Health Conditions

Health Policy Issues

Norton Advocates

  • Health Care Reform
  • Preventable Hospitalizations
  • Children in Poverty
  • Lack of Health Insurance
  • Dr. Josh Meier: Dr. Meier is a pediatric orthopaedic surgeon that has dedicated his time and talents to help the people of Haiti.

Health Conditions


Kentucky is the national leader in cancer deaths.  The American Cancer Society estimates that more than 20,000 men, women and children in Kentucky will be diagnosed with cancer this year.  More than 10,000 will die. 

KY Stats: 

  • 1st highest rate of lung cancer death in nation. 
  • 2nd leading cause of death in Kentucky is cancer
  • 3rd highest smoking rate in nation.

To address the high cancer incidence and mortality rates in Kentucky, Norton Healthcare established Norton Cancer Institute, the only accredited network cancer program accredited by the American College of Surgeons (ACoS) Commission on Cancer. Norton Cancer Institute provides programs and services not available elsewhere in the region:

Learn more about the programs and services offered by Norton Cancer Institute.

Heart Disease

Heart death rates and the overall high heart disease rates in Kentucky are disparaging.  KY is the 6th highest in the nation and the African American death rate in KY is the10th highest death in the nation. 

To address community needs, Norton Healthcare has created the following:

  • The state’s only Congenital Heart Center for children and adults.
  • The state’s only Women’s Heart Center dedicated solely to education, prevention and treatment of heart disease in women.
  • Nationally recognized door-to-balloon treatment times  -- a record of only 24 minutes was recently recorded at NHC compared to the national door-to-balloon goal of 90 minutes.
  • Multiple community outreach/cardiac screening and education programs including heart month in February, the African American High Blood Pressure campaign, vascular screenings and cardiac assessment initiatives.

Learn more about the programs and services offered by Norton Heart Care.

Brain Injuries

1 in 3 individuals, some 1.7 million people in KY and Southern Indiana, will be affected by a neurological disorder at some point in their life. Neurological disorders include a wide range of disease and ailments including stroke, aneurysm, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, epilepsy and even brain tumors

  • Stroke is the 3rd leading cause of death in the United States and Kentucky.
  • KY ranks 11th in United States for stroke death.
  • KY inpatient hospitalizations for all stroke-related diagnosis costs totaled more than $242 million in 2005.

Norton Neuroscience Institute provides comprehensive services for movement disorders, including epilepsy and Parkinson’s disease, as well as the development of a functional neurosurgery program and the region’s only center dedicated to the treatment of headache and concussions, led by Kentucky’s only neurologist fellowship-trained in headache and concussion care.

In order to address these issues, Norton Neuroscience Institute has added five neurosurgeons since its development in early 2009. These neurosurgeons include specialists in

Learn more about the programs and services offered by Norton Neuroscience Institute.


In 2008, 29.8% of Kentucky adults and 26.3% of Indiana adults were considered obese (with a Body Mass Index of 30 or more). The percentage of overweight children in the United States is growing at an alarming rate with 1 out of 3 kids now considered overweight or obese.

Learn more about the Office of Child Advocacy’s plans to address pediatric obesity or about the programs and services offered by Norton Health & Weight Management.


According to the CDC, it is estimated that 25.3% of KY population smokes.
Norton Healthcare addresses this through free smoking cessation classes and therapy. Combined with medical cessation assistance, patients have the opportunity to receive Rx support as well as emotional and mental support via the proven 13 week Cooper/Clayton Method to Stop Smoking (developed at University of Kentucky). Classes are free to patients.

Learn more about Norton Healthcare’s smoking cessation program.

Pre-Mature Births

Kentucky is 12th in the nation in low birth rates due to various issues with pre-natal care and high smoking rates.

To help reduce the number of low birth weight babies in KY, Norton Healthcare provides the following through Norton Women’s Care:

  • a perinatal outreach program for women experiencing high-risk pregnancies. Patients have access to the expertise of Maternal-Fetal Medicine Specialists for consultations, co-management with primary care OBGYNs and total care by specialists during the pregnancy. 
  • high risk care for both moms and babies with two Level III (the highest level of care) Neonatal Intensive Care Units (NICU) at Kosair Children’s Hopsital and Norton Women's and Kosair Children's Hospital and a high risk ob program.
  • an obstetric hospitalist model was also implemented to provide 24/7 on-site coverage and to respond to obstetric emergencies at Norton Hospital. 

Learn more about the programs and services offered by Norton Women’s Care.

Health Care Reform

Health Care Reform Analysis

The following reflects what NHC management has advocated regarding healthcare/insurance reform principles:

Regarding Providers, Reimbursement, and Accountability healthcare reform should include appropriate mechanisms which:

  • Promotes and reimburses based on keeping the population healthy rather than perpetuating a system rewarding volume of services provided
  • Promotes prevention/wellness, early detection/intervention, and personal accountability
  • Requires coordination by providers of services across the continuum of care
  • Rewards quality and efficiency
  • Requires a coordinated, national healthcare information technology (IT) system to link providers, insurers, and government programs, to  
    enhance coordination of services and portability of coverage
  • Includes professional liability (tort) reform

 Regarding Coverage and Insurance reform:

  • Assures universal coverage for all citizens, presumably through multiple avenues including governmental programs (e.g. Medicare, Medicaid), employer provided insurance plans, and private insurance plans.
  • Assures private health insurance plans are available and affordable for individuals/families that do not have access to coverage through an employer and are not eligible for governmental programs.
  • If a “Public Plan” is created, the purpose should be to provide coverage for individuals or families who cannot access coverage through the employers or other sources, with subsidies for the poor.  In such plans, reimbursement to physicians, hospitals, and other providers should be based on negotiated rates and not on Medicare or other government program’s fee schedules.
  • Health insurance should be provided with guarantee issue, no pre-existing conditions, a community rating, and should have required components in various tiers of coverage to facilitate comparability and competitiveness of plans while enhancing efficiencies of administration

Side-by-Side Comparison of Major Health Care Reform Proposals:

The President’s Proposal:

Federal Health Reform Bills:
            Senate Bill:  PatientProtection and Affordable Care Act (H.R. 3590)
            House Bill:  Affordable Health Care for America Act (H.R. 3962)

National Association of Children’s Hospitals (NACH): Position, Talking Points & Briefings

U.S. Congressional Committees involved with Federal Health Care Reform:
       United States Senate
             Health, Education, Labor & Pensions (HELP)
       United States House of Representatives
            Energy & Commerce 
            Ways & Means
            Education & Labor

Kentucky Hospital Association on Federal Reform:

Be a Norton Advocate
Tell A Friend
Take Action


Medical Care

Pregnancy & Prenatal Classes
Weight Loss
Heart Disease
Women's Health
More Medical Care


Immediate Care
Health Centers
Emergency Room
Doctors Offices
Affiliate Hospitals

Patients and Visitors

Pay Your Bill
Request an Appointment
Get Healthy
Support Groups
Fitness Groups
Mobile Applications
Clinical Trials
Online Nursery
Classes and Events
Send an eCard
Patient Stories
Patient and Family Advisory Council
Places to Stay
Say Thanks
Risk Assessments

About Us

Quality Report 
Ways to Help
Community Outreach
Contact Us
(502) 629-1234

Connect with us

© 2015 Norton Healthcare
Serving Kentucky and Southern Indiana