Health News Florida

Since 2006, Health News Florida has provided in-depth journalism on health policy issues in our state.

Health News Florida is a project of WUSF Public Media in Tampa and is heard on public radio stations throughout Florida. It also is available online at

Nneka Campbell spent the third anniversary of her daughter's death at a hearing at the Florida Department of Health in Tallahassee -- to honor, she said, the memory of 10-month-old Amelia, who died of complications following heart surgery at St. Mary's Medical Center in West Palm Beach.

Florida still has nearly 2.8 million residents who lack health insurance, according to a new report, and 80 percent of them are uninsured for reasons that have nothing to do with Medicaid politics.

Republican presidential candidate Jeb Bush is proposing to repeal and replace President Barack Obama's health care law with one that would increase tax credits for individuals, allowing them to buy coverage protection against "high-cost medical events."

US Boosts Privacy Protection On Health Insurance Website

Oct 12, 2015

Responding to criticism from civil liberties advocates, the Obama administration said Friday it has strengthened consumer privacy protections on the government's health insurance website as a new sign-up season nears.

A doctor accused of giving a toddler a fatal dose of an unapproved drug was declared “very, very dangerous” at a meeting of the Florida Board of Medicine on Friday. But she escaped serious discipline by agreeing to go away and stay away.

Lawmakers Seek To Shield Seniors From Shady Guardians

Oct 12, 2015

A Southwest Florida lawmaker is renewing a push to better protect elderly Floridians from unscrupulous guardians who take control of seniors' assets.

DCF, Senators Eye Ways To Bolster Child Protection

Oct 12, 2015

The chief of the Florida Department of Children and Families told lawmakers Thursday his agency is making progress at carrying out reforms but still has a long way to go.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced an update to its Agricultural Worker Protection Standard in late September.  The updates are intended to better protect against harmful pesticide exposure.  Farmworker advocates are celebrating the victory and what it will mean form the nation’s 2 million farmworkers, including nearly 300,000 in Florida.

Florida lawmakers are bracing for budget holes despite figures showing the state could end up with another year of surplus.  The cost driver: healthcare.

Healthcare concerns, more specifically cost problems—are starting to take over conversations at the capital.

A doctor who says she is “dedicated to the natural treatment of cancer” has been ordered to appear before the Florida Board of Medicine on Friday to explain the death of a toddler from an unapproved drug.

In addition to polling attitudes about marijuana, the survey of 1,173 Florida voters found that some of the Republicans who want to succeed Sen. Marco Rubio would lose in a general election to either of their major Democratic rivals. On the marijuana issue, a group called Floridians For Freedom has begun gathering petitions asking voters to legalize the drug by state constitutional amendment. At the same time, a group called United for Care is trying for the second time to legalize medical marijuana via constitutional amendment.

State health officials are nearing a decision on who will get to grow medical marijuana in the Florida.  Meanwhile two lawmakers are hoping to expand the pool of eligible patients.

Senate Panel Wants Answers From DOH On Children's Health Programs

Oct 8, 2015

A Florida Senate panel on Wednesday demanded answers from a state Department of Health official about how many special-needs children have recently lost services as the state transitions to a new Medicaid system --- and why.

The families of three high school students who died after being hypnotized by a former principal will receive $200,000 each from the Sarasota County School District under a settlement agreement unanimously approved by the School Board on Tuesday.

President Barack Obama has signed legislation aimed at preventing premium increases that some smaller businesses were expecting next year under his signature health care law.

Health care has been a hot-button policy issue for years in the Florida Legislature, and it’s starting to look like the session scheduled to start on Jan. 12 will be no different.

Cloudy Timeline For Medical Marijuana Frustrates

Oct 7, 2015

With the Department of Health unable to say when licenses will be issued in the state's new medical-marijuana industry, a House Republican on Tuesday blasted delays in carrying out a 2014 law billed as helping children with severe epilepsy.

Massage Licenses Could Be Revoked Over Sexual Misconduct

Oct 7, 2015

A Southwest Florida massage therapist and massage establishment should lose their licenses and be forced to pay thousands of dollars in fines after allegations of sexual misconduct, a state administrative law judge recommended this week.

Children who get health insurance through Medicaid go to the dentist about half as often as children in Florida who have private insurance, according to a new study out from the American Dental Association and the Health Policy Institute.

Consumers shopping on the government's health insurance website should find it easier this year to get basic questions answered about their doctors, medications and costs, according to an internal government document.