Ryan Benk

Phone: (850) 487-3086  x368

Ryan Benk is originally from Miami, Florida and came to Tallahassee to attend Florida State University. He worked on Miami Dade College’s Arts and Literature Magazine- Miamibiance Magazine and has published poetry and a short film called “The Writer.” He’s currently working as the Newsroom’s Researcher while finishing his Creative Writing Bachelor’s Degree at Florida State University. When he’s not tracking down news, Ryan likes watching films, writing fiction and poetry, and exploring Florida.

Florida Senate budget chiefs Wednesday greenlit a spending plan that includes a new formula for reimbursing nursing homes.

Opponents say the proposal would cut Medicaid dollars for top performing homes, while proponents argue it’ll result in a more equitable distribution of state funds.


After battling for years over how to make healthcare more accessible and affordable, Florida lawmakers landed on a compromise. Instead of expanding Medicaid to cover more people, they decided during last year’s session to attack the cost of care directly, creating a database to make procedure pricing transparent.

Everything from mandatory recess to testing schedules is up for debate during the state legislative session that begins next week.

Rep. Tracie Davis, D-Jacksonville, and Sen. Aaron Bean, R-Fernandina Beach, laid out their education agendas to members of Duval County’s Parent Teacher Association Tuesday.


An engineer with the American Bureau of Shipping testified Thursday the sunken El Faro ship met all guidelines before it sailed in September of 2015.

That contradicts some previous testimony from one naval architect.

Florida is making a database of medical procedures and the average price patients should expect to pay for them.

Members of the House Health and Human Services Committee got a preview of what it may look like Tuesday.


In her first public appearance as state attorney Monday, Melissa Nelson reiterated her campaign promise of restoring the public’s confidence in Northeast Florida’s criminal justice system.

Nelson admitted the challenge of changing the office’s culture will be an exacting task, but that she had a specific blueprint to accomplish that goal.

Florida Governor Rick Scott is hoping a better working relationship with Washington, D.C. will bring about a solution to the state’s ongoing battle over health care funding.


The fate of President Barack Obama’s signature healthcare law is uncertain after the election of Republican Donald Trump, who campaigned on a complete repeal of the Affordable Care Act.

But not everyone is sweating the uncertainty.


State medical authorities revoked the medical license of an “integrative medicine” doctor Thursday for his role in the death of a college student from untreated cancer.

Florida health care regulators are considering doing away with a rule limiting the number of trauma centers that can set up shop in each region.


St. Petersburg is facing scrutiny over its recent decision to pump 20 million gallons of sewage from an overloaded treatment plant into Tampa Bay.

One national environmental organization is warning: similar overflows could become more common as the climate changes.


The Sunshine State’s health care system is one of the worst in the country, according to a new survey from the personal-finance website Wallet Hub.

One Northeast Florida public health expert said that has more to do with state policy than it does with the quality of doctors.


Because of a new law, Florida patients won’t have to pay for medical care by doctors outside their insurance network if the service was performed at an in-network hospital.

The law effectively bans a practice called “balance billing.” But emergency room doctors say the new law misses the mark.


The head of Virginia-based One Door for Education Foundation pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit wire fraud, as court documents show. 

The charity has close ties with U.S. Congresswoman Corrine Brown (D-FL5), who was served a subpoena in January in Jacksonville.

Florida Governor Rick Scott is asking the Legislature to pass a $79.3 billion state budget next year.

At a news conference in Jacksonville Monday morning, Scott went over some of the highlights of his Florida First Budget.

One of those highlights is a substantial revision to how the state doles out money for indigent health care.

The federal government is standing firm in its decision not to increase funding for indigent health care in Florida next year.

State health officials hoped the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services would pony up more than $304 million in matching funds for a program called the Low Income Pool, down from a half billion this year.

One Jacksonville Senator isn't worried about the decrease in funds. At least for now.


About a fifth of Floridians are over the age of 65.

But instead of planning for final expenses, a recent AAA survey found half of Sunshine State residents don’t have life insurance.

Myths about coverage could be driving the low enrollment.


A Northeast Florida lawmaker is predicting Medicaid expansion won't be a factor during the next legislative session.

Senate Health Policy Chairman Sen. Aaron Bean (R-Fernandina Beach) said his focus will be on bringing down health care costs, rather than expanding coverage in 2016.

That’s because the federal government agreed to extend funding for uninsured patients through next year.


Conservative lawmakers in Florida are in the final stages of passing two bills that detractors say amount to nothing more than thinly veiled racism and xenophobia. But both proposals have undergone extensive reimagining before finally making it to the House floor.

Both chambers of the Florida Legislature are trying to push through reforms to the way the state regulates the environment. Some call the proposals an affront to local sovereignty, while others call the move common sense. But increasing differences between the Senate and House versions of the measure are leading some to question whether it has a chance of passing this session.

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