Health News Florida
11:57 am
Wed April 23, 2014

Sarasota Memorial Health CEO Leaving

Gwen MacKenzie
Sarasota Memorial Health Care System

Originally published on Wed April 23, 2014 11:32 am

Sarasota Memorial Health Care System’s president and CEO Gwen MacKenzie is leaving at the end of May for a leadership position with the nation’s largest Catholic and nonprofit health system, according to a news release.

After spending nearly 10 years with Sarasota Memorial as president and CEO, MacKenzie will return to her home state of Michigan to work for Ascension Health. While her title was not specified in the release, it said she will have administrative and operations responsibility for Ascension's five health systems in Michigan.

Law & Order
9:32 am
Wed April 23, 2014

Supreme Court Says No To No-Fault Case

The Florida Supreme Court won't hear a challenge by acupuncturists and massage therapists who sought to overturn a 2012 law that supporters said would cut fraud from the state's no-fault auto insurance system.

Monday's decision effectively ends the case, which focused during appeals on whether unnamed plaintiffs had legal "standing" to pursue the challenge. But Adam Levine, an attorney for the challengers, has said in the past he could re-file the case with named plaintiffs.

With the decision, Insurance Commissioner Kevin McCarty said the law proceeds, "nothing changes."

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1:58 pm
Tue April 22, 2014

WUSF Wins Two Regional Edward R. Murrow Awards

Edward R. would be proud

WUSF has won two regional 2014 Edward R. Murrow Awards.And they both went to…. drum roll please…. WUSF reporter Bobbie O’Brien. For Best Feature Reporting for her story on Autism Defined by Those with the Diagnosis that she did with our intern, Andrew Casey; and for best Sports Reporting for Veteran Athletes Give Super Effort in Super G.

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11:46 am
Tue April 22, 2014

Bollywood IIFA 2014 Comes To Town

Shahid Kapoor with Kareena Kapoor
Credit IBN Times

The International Indian Film Academy's biggest party is starting this week in Tampa. Otherwise known as the Bollywood Oscars, tens of thousands of fans are expected to attend IIFA events across the Bay Area.  

And famous Bollywood actors and actresses are expected to be in town. 

So to get you ready for the festivities, which start with the IIFA Stomp Wednesday night at Tampa's Curtis Hixon Park, here's a little primer on The Best of Bollywood from Time.  

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10:34 am
Tue April 22, 2014

Breaking Down the Myths and Misconceptions About the Gulf Oil Spill

Lead in text: 
A large part of the confusion was due to the connected, yet distinct, seafood issues surrounding the spill. Whether the seafood was safe for humans to eat was mixed with stories of the future of Gulf fisheries; harm done to wild fish was conflated with health of the seafood supply. To clear up some of the confusion, here are seven topics of concern, some still unresolved, about the Gulf Oil Spill, brought to you by the Smithsonian Ocean Portal and the Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative (GoMRI). These should help you better understand the spill’s effects on seafood and wildlife.
In the months and years following the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill, telling fact from fiction regarding seafood safety and ecosystem health was supremely difficult. Is Gulf seafood safe to eat or not? Are there really deformed shrimp and black lesion-covered red snapper? Will the Gulf ever be clean again?
10:32 am
Tue April 22, 2014

Four Years Later, a Sharp Divide on Gulf Oil Spill

Lead in text: 
A spate of reports and press releases leading up to the anniversary of the disaster, which took place April 20, 2010, sketch a picture of a region still awash in oil and tar, with fish and wildlife struggling to survive and thousands of people suffering from both economic and physical or mental distress. Those assessments stand in stark contrast to BP's declaration last week that "active cleanup" is complete and ongoing restoration work "is helping the Gulf return to its baseline condition, which is the condition it would be in if the accident had not occurred."
The state of the Gulf of Mexico four years after the worst oil spill in U.S. history is as unclear as a marsh soaked with petrochemicals. The state of BP, on the other hand, is powerful and proud, with the British energy giant showing little tolerance for criticism over the incident.
10:23 am
Tue April 22, 2014

Laurel Wilt Fungus Poses Threat to Florida's Avocado Trees

Lead in text: 
Lethal to avocado and other tree species in the laurel family, the fungus — Raffaelea lauricola — poses a serious threat to Florida's commercial avocado industry, worth $55 million to the state economy, according to University of Florida agricultural economist Edward "Gilly" Evans. First detected in northeast Florida's Duval County in 2005, the disease moved rapidly through the state, striking Florida's commercial production area in south Miami-Dade County in March 2012.
WINTER HAVEN | Born and raised in Mexico, Sergio Cruz certainly has the pedigree for making authentic guacamole. In recent years, the Winter Haven man has coalesced recipes into a formula that routinely wins rave reviews at potlucks and family gatherings.
9:17 am
Tue April 22, 2014

Forced To Put Its Nets Away, Cedar Key Clams Up — Literally

Downtown Cedar Key
Credit Wikimedia Commons

Since Florida banned gill nets 20 years ago, University of Florida researchers have helped Cedar Key replace commercial fishing with aquaculture. The area's now among the most productive clam farming regions in the U.S.

Copyright © 2014 NPR. For personal, noncommercial use only. See Terms of Use. For other uses, prior permission required.


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University Beat
9:06 am
Tue April 22, 2014

Girl with 'Bionic' Arm Returns to Moffitt, Shriners

11-year-old Josalyn Kaldenberg paints a picture of a horse at Moffitt Cancer Center. The faint scar on her right arm is the only visible sign of her pioneering surgery.
Mark Schreiner WUSF 89.7 News

You wouldn't know it by looking at her, but Josalyn Kaldenberg has a bionic arm.

Even if you looked hard at her right arm, you'd only see a small scar, a barely noticeable, faint line that starts around her elbow and then runs up her arm. It looks like it could be the result of an injury any 11-year-old like Josalyn would have - maybe she fell off a swing or got injured rough-housing with her four younger siblings back home in Woodward, Iowa.

But that scar is actually historic. You see, under that scar, Josalyn Kaldenberg has an expandable, prosthetic upper arm bone - the first of its kind in a child in the United States.

University Beat report on Josalyn Kaldenberg's 'bionic' arm

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8:58 am
Tue April 22, 2014

What Exactly Is 'High-Quality' Preschool?

Nikki Jones' preschool class at Porter Early Childhood Development Center in Tulsa.
John W. Poole NPR

Originally published on Fri May 16, 2014 11:04 am

For years, President Obama has been a vocal booster of early childhood education. In his past two State of the Union addresses, he has called on Congress to help fund preschool for every child in the country.

"Research shows that one of the best investments we can make in a child's life is high-quality early education," Obama told Congress in January.

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8:55 am
Tue April 22, 2014

Compassionate Or 'Too Edgy'? Medical Marijuana Bill Advances To Full Fla. House

Rosalyn Deckerhoff testifies before the House Judiciary Committee about her son's seizure treatment, which has included surgery separating parts of his brain.

Originally published on Mon April 21, 2014 5:32 pm

A passionately, tearfully debated bill legalizing non-smoked medical marijuana is headed to the Florida House floor after passing its final committee today. But some who voted for the measure warned they could not continue supporting it in its current form.

During Monday’s debate, several legislators acknowledged they’re part of a national sea change on the issue of medical marijuana.

Rep. Elaine Schwartz (D-Hollywood) brought up today’s “Diane Rehm Show” discussion of America’s attitude shift toward marijuana.

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8:54 am
Tue April 22, 2014

Newly Merged House Pension Reform Proposal Draws Concerns

Originally published on Tue April 22, 2014 9:37 am

A passionately-debated effort to overhaul the Florida Retirement System has now been merged with a widely-supported effort to fix local government pensions.  It’s part of an ongoing push by House Speaker Will Weatherford to get his state pension reform effort over the finish line. But, many spoke out against the now-merged House proposal Monday.

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8:25 am
Tue April 22, 2014

Abortion Bill Heads to Senate Vote

The Senate Rules Committee on Monday narrowly approved a bill that could prohibit certain abortions now legal in Florida, sending the measure to the full Senate.

The committee supported, in a 6-5 party-line vote, a proposal (SB 918) by Miami Republican Sen. Anitere Flores that is intended to prevent abortions after fetuses reach the point of "viability." Flores said the bill won't hinder a woman's ability to get an abortion in the first 20 weeks of pregnancy.

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5:00 pm
Mon April 21, 2014

NASA's Ambitious Plan To Send Humans To Mars

This computer-generated view depicts part of Mars at the boundary between darkness and daylight, with an area including Gale Crater beginning to catch morning light. (NASA/JPL-Caltech)

Originally published on Mon April 21, 2014 2:52 pm

The nation’s space agency is gearing up to put humans on Mars within the next two decades. NASA is testing a supersonic lander that can carry heavy loads, and just signed a 20-year lease on a launch pad at the Kennedy Space Center.

Mike Gazarik is associate administrator of NASA’s Space Technology Mission Directorate and he tells Here & Now’s Jeremy Hobson that going to Mars is part of Americans’ pioneering spirit, and will also have benefits for life on Earth.

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3:03 pm
Mon April 21, 2014

Earth Day Events Across Tampa Bay

Several events will be happening on Tuesday April 22 in honor of Earth Day.
Credit Royce Bair / Flickr

In honor of Earth Day on Tuesday April 22, the following events are taking place across Tampa Bay:

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