NO MORE RIDES FOR PATIENTS: We’re sorry to see that free transportation provided for 80 years to some patients traveling to appointments at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics has been discontinued. The UIHC service, unfunded by the state, was providing rides to many patients in IowaCare, the state’s health care program for low-income adults who don’t qualify for Medicaid. UIHC wants to redirect the money spent on the transportation service to patient care, certainly a valid reason. If IowaCare patients must continue to travel to Iowa City to see specialists, as required, we hope other non-profit or state agencies can help those most in need of transportation.
SCHOOL ENROLLMENT: Statewide, k-12 student enrollment grew 2,741 students over the previous year — the first significant bump since 1996. But the news wasn’t as good close to home. The Cedar Rapids district continued to shrink, declining 127 students from the 2011-12 school year to the current term, second only to Davenport’s decrease of 191. Over five years, Iowa showed a net loss of 774 students. Cedar Rapids dropped 851, the most in the state by almost three times any other district’s loss. The tiny Stratford district lost 25 percent of its enrollment, the state’s biggest percentage drop over five years.