Carol Gentry

Health News Florida Editor

Carol Gentry, founder and editor of Health News Florida, has three decades of experience covering health finance and policy, with an emphasis on consumer education and protection.

She covered health and medicine for the St. Petersburg Times for 10 years, for the Tampa Tribune for two years and for the Wall Street Journal for three years, in addition to being a member of the editorial board of the Orlando Sentinel in 2004-05. She has written for national magazines and been a commentator for public radio’s Marketplace; she is active in the Association of Health Care Journalists, serving as a judge for the awards each year.

Ms. Gentry was a Kaiser Family Foundation Media Fellow in 1994-95, conducting research on the managed-care movement’s impact on patients and health-care professionals. In 1996, she earned a master’s degree in public administration with a concentration in health policy from the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University. She has taught health journalism at the college and professional level in this and other countries and directed the Knight Journalism Fellowships at CDC for almost four years. She also served two years as a Peace Corps volunteer in Colombia.

Contact Ms. Gentry at at 727-410-3266 or by e-mail.


Health News Florida
9:11 am
Wed April 16, 2014

Ex-Pres. of Medicare Plan Arrested

Originally published on Wed April 16, 2014 10:56 am

Haider Ali Khan, patriarch of the now-defunct Quality Health Plans Inc., has been arrested and charged with more than a dozen felonies involving health-insurance fraud, state officials said.

Khan, who was president of the Tampa-based Medicare plan before it closed, turned himself in to Leon County Jail officials on April 3 and was released on $150,000 bond, according to the state Office of Insurance Regulation (OIR). His arrest came 20 months after that of his son and daughter, both of whom were also executives in the company.

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Health News Florida
7:30 am
Thu April 10, 2014

FL Scientists Key in Melanoma Breakthrough

Kieran Smalley in lab at Moffitt.

Originally published on Thu April 10, 2014 9:10 am

In a lab the size of a basketball court, Moffitt scientist Kieran Smalley and his team study human genes and proteins involved in different kinds of cancer. Their machines whir and clang, but the researchers don't seem to hear it.

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Health News Florida
7:46 am
Fri April 4, 2014

HCG Clinics Beyond Board's Control

Originally published on Fri April 4, 2014 7:30 am

An effort to rein in a weight-loss fad that the FDA calls risky ran into a wall Thursday night at a Florida Board of Medicine hearing in Deerfield Beach.

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Health News Florida
1:55 pm
Tue April 1, 2014

Crunch Time Hits Uninsured, Website

Walt Seely, volunteer for Get Covered, America
Carol Gentry WUSF

Originally published on Tue April 1, 2014 7:32 am

Al Lopez Park in Tampa is normally an oasis of serenity on a Monday. But on the last day of open enrollment for health insurance under the Affordable Care Act, the community center was crowded, noisy and stressful. Hundreds of procrastinators came seeking help from navigators.

It was a microcosm of the nation, as 3 million Americans visited the website and another 1 million used the call-center line on the last official day to sign up for a 2014 health plan.

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Health News Florida
12:13 pm
Thu March 6, 2014

'It's All About Hope' -- and $51B

Doctors for America bus
Doctors for America

A lot of money - $200 million a month or $7 million a day – could be used to buy health coverage for Florida's poor. But it all could go to some other state, said advocates who held a Capitol press conference Wednesday with the message: “Take the Money!”

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Health News Florida
2:52 pm
Wed February 19, 2014

Nurse-Power Bill Gets Its Start

Florida Capitol

A bill that would expand the authority of nurse practitioners and open a door for some to practice independently of physicians was approved by the Florida House Select Committee on Health Care Workforce Innovation on Tuesday evening.

The vote drew bipartisan support, with only two "no votes" on a board of more than a dozen. But several members said their support was tentative, that they wanted to see further debate and some tweaks.

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Health News Florida
12:39 pm
Thu February 13, 2014

Some Republicans Love Obamacare

Irene Jacusis of New Port Richey, who is thankful to be insured.

Originally published on Wed February 12, 2014 11:39 pm

By now, the Republican Party’s view of the Affordable Care Act should be pretty familiar, as in this ad from David Jolly:

“I’m fighting to repeal Obamacare, right away. It’s bad for our families, and our economy.”

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Health News Florida
12:38 pm
Thu February 13, 2014

Enrollment Surges in FL

Avalere Health, a consulting company, rates Florida as one of just 15 states closing in on projected enrollment for 2014.

Originally published on Thu February 13, 2014 11:45 am

Despite state officials' opposition to the Affordable Care Act and the relative scarcity of helpers available,  Floridians are finding their way to and signing up for plans even beyond the growth in most states.

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Health News Florida
12:41 pm
Wed January 22, 2014

FL Blue Acts When Story Airs

Merrie Beth Neely

Two Florida Blue customers who had been caught in a major glitch in the company’s enrollment process say they received help immediately after WUSF's Health News Florida reported on their problem.

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Health News Florida
12:17 pm
Thu January 16, 2014

Glitch Hits FL Blue Enrollees

Merrie Beth Neely

Originally published on Thu January 16, 2014 3:52 pm

Florida Blue may have bitten off more than it can chew with its new plans under the Affordable Care Act. The company's customer-service apparatus and computer system appear to be overwhelmed and unable to cope.

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Health News Florida
5:09 pm
Tue January 14, 2014

Feds Target HMA's Ex-CEO

Former HMA CEO Gary Newsome

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 5:11 pm

The U.S. Department of Justice has signed on to eight false claims lawsuits against Health Management Associates, claiming the Naples-based hospital chain billed for unnecessary patient admissions and paid kickbacks to doctors who referred patients.

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Health News Florida
12:20 pm
Thu January 9, 2014

Speaker Ignores Editorial Chorus on Medicaid

House Speaker Will Weatherford

Originally published on Thu January 9, 2014 12:38 pm

Editorial boards at the Tampa  Bay Times and The Tampa Tribune don't agree on much beyond motherhood and apple pie, with the Times leaning left and Trib leaning right. But there’s one thing they do agree on: Florida should take the money.

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Health News Florida
12:48 pm
Tue January 7, 2014

Medicaid Contract in Turmoil

Originally published on Tue January 7, 2014 4:43 pm

Miami-Dade County, the juiciest plum in Florida Medicaid’s switch to mandatory managed care, could still be in play following a ruling against the Agency for Health Care Administration in its contracting decisions. Hundreds of millions of dollars could ride on the outcome. 

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Health News Florida
4:45 pm
Fri January 3, 2014

Time to Fix Glitch in Pharmacy Law?

Originally published on Fri January 3, 2014 4:49 pm

After a long delay, the Florida Department of Health wants to fix a gap in the law that made it powerless over out-of-state compounding pharmacies. 

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Health News Florida
10:04 am
Thu January 2, 2014

New Insurance Era Begins

Bo Frazer of Melbourne

Originally published on Fri January 3, 2014 4:43 pm

(UPDATED) Thousands of previously uninsured Floridians woke up Wednesday morning with peace of mind for the first time in years: They had a health insurance card, or at least the promise that one is in the mail.

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