health news florida

Quincy J. Walters / WUSF News

April is Sexually Transmitted Disease Awareness Month. Friday, April 17 was STD Awareness Day in Hillsborough County. 

To mark the occasion, the Hillsborough County Florida Department of Health's clinic had a free STD testing day. 

The lobby was filled with music, balloons, conversation and health trivia games. 

Florida lawmakers are watching a projected $1 billion surplus disappear before their eyes. The cause: the impending loss of $1 billion in federal funds that support hospitals that treat low-income, uninsured patients. Both Governor Rick Scott and House Speaker Steve Crisafulli are counting on that money to come down, but the Senate is not.

Psychology Professor Jonathan Rottenberg wants to change the way people think about depression, a condition the World Health Organization estimates 

The dirt road and lush tree canopy leading to the Catholic Charities medical clinic is in stark contrast to the bright lights surrounding the nearest hospital.

Here, sirens would be drowned out by choruses of crickets and katydids.

But this refurbished double-wide trailer off a rural highway in Dover is a medical refuge for some agricultural workers and their families.

Moffitt Adds OSU to Cancer Database

May 29, 2014

Moffitt Cancer Center, which began assembling a database of cancer patient tissue and clinical information a decade ago, is going national.

The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center on Wednesday was named the first partner in the Oncology Research Information Exchange Network, or ORIEN.

Moffitt’s for-profit subsidiary, M2Gen, will oversee the database’s operations. It already contains information on more than 105,000 patients.

The Health News Florida team is coming to USF Sarasota-Manatee on Thursday, May 8 at 5:30 p.m. for a brief program and reception.

It's your chance to meet us and the leaders of WUSF Public Media, which has been our home since September 2012.

USF Health is investigating a breach that exposed the personal information of about 140 patients treated by its doctors at Tampa General Hospital.

If it's a Monday, you can usually find Dr. David Brown parked next to a lake in Miami, spending the day inside a 36-foot-long RV. He's not on vacation.

Brown is chief of family medicine at Florida International University's medical school. The RV is the school's mobile health clinic.

Tons of health issues were brought up by the Florida Legislature this session. We've been paying close attention, and we're still sorting it all out.  

That's where you come in. We want to know what questions you have about the health issues lawmakers dealt with during the session.

Join us for a tweet chat on Thursday, May 9 at 12:15 p.m.  Make sure you're following us on Twitter  @HealthNewsFL and then tweet us your questions with the hashtag #HNFchat. 

Come join the discussion! 

Peter Foe / USF Contemporary Art Museum

The healing power of art is on display at the Moffitt Cancer Center through September, and it's also the topic of a symposium there tonight.

Megan Hildebrandt was just 25 years old when she was diagnosed with Hodgkin's Lymphoma in 2009. She began receiving treatment at Moffitt, and went into remission in 2011. She graduated from USF with her Master of Fine Arts degree last year, and now lives in Texas.

Now, a collection of her drawings reflecting on her time as a patient is on display in the lobby of the Moffitt Stabile Research building, where she'll speak at a symposium called "Witnessing Cancer: Communicating Illness through Visual Art and Narrative" tonight at 6 p.m.

Dr. Carey Rowan got to take in the wonders of the Amazon jungle during his recent trip to Colombia. What really mattered to this board-certified ophthalmologist, however, was what he helped others see. As part of a philanthropic mission trip coordinated through Medical Ministry International, Rowan and other volunteers distributed 5,000 pairs of glasses — many collected through the Lions Club — to those who needed them. They conducted 600 eye exams every day at a local hospital.

Dr. Steven Wasserman has entered the history books of health fraud. The Venice dermatologist recently agreed to pay $26 million to settle charges of Medicare fraud without admitting wrongdoing.

It is one of the largest one-man settlements in the nation's history, a "watershed event," says Robert O'Neill, U.S. Attorney for the Middle District of Florida.

Mark Schreiner / WUSF News

Ground has been broken on the H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center's new McKinley Drive Outpatient facility, which will serve patients with a variety of cancers, while also creating a number of jobs for the Tampa Bay area. This week's University Beat on WUSF Public Media has more on what the plan means for Moffitt, USF and the community.

Moffitt Cancer Center

Ground has been broken on the latest expansion of the H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center, with both the economic and physical health of the Bay area being the main beneficiaries.

Moffitt Cancer Center's new outpatient care facility will be located on McKinley Drive, about two miles south of Moffitt's main site on the University of South Florida's Tampa campus. The 200,000 square foot, eight story structure will feature four ambulatory surgical suites and clinical space for Moffitt's breast and skin cancer programs.

Who likes meetings? Anybody?

Didn't think so.

Now what if the meeting were held on the go instead of in a stuffy conference room?

If that sounds a little better, then try a walking meeting. You and your colleagues can talk shop and get some exercise.

Florida and several other states are wrestling with a decision: whether to expand Medicaid.

When the Supreme Court upheld the Affordable Care Act last year, the court said states could opt out of that part of the law. But it's key. It would provide coverage to millions of low-income Americans who currently have no health insurance.

Florida Gov. Rick Scott says he's concerned about how much expanding Medicaid would cost. But others charge the governor is exaggerating.

The state’s chief economist has warned the staff of Gov. Rick Scott that his Medicaid cost estimates are wrong, but Scott keeps using them anyway, according to a series of e-mails obtained by Health News Florida.

Couple Chooses to Fight for Tiny Baby's Life

Dec 17, 2012
Tampa Bay Times

When Kelley Benham and Tom French’s daughter was born at 23 weeks, doctors told them the situation was grim. Half the babies born this early do not survive. Every body part is underdeveloped at this age and many face disabilities.

The couple was told they would have to make a very tough choice: allow their baby to die or fight for her survival. They chose to fight.

The Affordable Care Act, as passed by Congress in 2010, assumed that every low-income person would have access to health insurance starting in 2014.

That's when about 17 million Americans — mostly unmarried healthy adults with incomes up to 133 percent of poverty, or about $15,000 a year — would gain access to Medicaid.

For all of you interested in health news, consider this a holiday present.

WUSF Public Media recently acquired Health News Florida, an award-winning website focused on explaining how health policy affects you and your family.

As of today, Health News Florida has a beautiful new website, with more health stories from NPR, and great audio and video as well.

Health News Florida also is producing a weekly radio feature that’s aired every Thursday on WUSF 89.7 and on public radio stations throughout the state of Florida.

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