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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 http://health.wusf.usf.edu

Stephanie Colombini / WUSF Public Media

U.S. Senator Bill Nelson and Tampa Congresswoman Kathy Castor are asking the federal government to step in after thousands of kids were kicked off a state Medicaid program. The two Democrats sent a letter to Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price earlier this week.


Thousands reacted this week to a photo of residents sitting waist-deep in floodwaters at an assisted living facility in Dickinson, Texas. The town did not issue a mandatory evacuation order ahead of Tropical Storm Harvey. The photo, and Texas officials' decisions to not evacuate, could have ramifications for emergency plans for Florida’s elderly residents.

It costs American hospitals about $622 million every year to admit patients with gunshot wounds—and it turns out, we’re all paying the bills.

That’s according to a new study in the journal Injury Epidemiology that tapped into a national sample of hospital records to gauge the cost of admitting patients with firearm injuries.

The researchers broke the costs down by injury type, demographics and insurance status.

Among the findings:

There are more than 4 million children in Florida, and Dr. Jeffrey Brosco just became responsible for them.

Supreme Court Hears Arguments In Blood-Alcohol Battle

Aug 31, 2017

The Florida Supreme Court on Wednesday heard arguments in a legal battle about whether the state has adequate rules for testing blood-alcohol levels in suspected drunken-driving cases.

Proposal Re-Emerges About Guns At Private Schools

Aug 31, 2017

Floridians with concealed-weapons licenses would be allowed to pack heat while at private schools located on the property of religious institutions, under a proposal filed Wednesday in the state House.

It may become easier to find lawyers to represent special-needs kids if a Northeast Florida lawmaker’s bill is passed.

Sen. Aaron Bean (R-Fernandina Beach) wants taxpayers to cover court costs for their attorneys working pro bono.


High-Profile DUI Case Sparks Battle Over Blood Tests

Aug 29, 2017

Attorneys for a Palm Beach County millionaire convicted of DUI manslaughter will go before the Florida Supreme Court this week to challenge state rules for testing blood-alcohol levels in drunken-driving cases.

Workers’ Comp Rates Could Decrease In 2018

Aug 29, 2017

Florida businesses could see workers' compensation insurance premiums decrease in 2018, after a tumultuous period that included a double-digit rate hike late last year and a lobbying battle about whether to revamp workers' compensation laws.

Latvala Asks Scott To Free Up $20M For Opioid Fight

Aug 29, 2017

Saying the “opioid crisis presents an existential threat,” Senate Appropriations Chairman Jack Latvala on Monday asked Gov. Rick Scott to use executive authority to provide $20 million for opioid-related services.

A meeting between Miami-Dade County officials and county residents concerned about aerial mosquito spraying was cancelled Monday.

color:#181818">Hillsborough County State Attorney Andrew Warren has withdrawn pursuit of the death penalty in five of 24 cases he inherited when he took over the office in January, The Tampa Bay Times reported. A sixth defendant avoided death row with a guilty plea.


The sheriff in Pinellas County has fired a decorated deputy who was recorded taunting an autistic student at the middle school where he provided security and guidance.

A proposal by two senators to replace Obamacare would be particularly bad for Florida, costing the state billions of dollars over the next 10 years, a new study says.

House Ready For Another Run At ‘Direct Primary Care’

Aug 28, 2017

After approving similar proposals in each of the past three years, the House is poised to again take up a “direct primary care” bill during the 2018 legislative session.

The Reflections treatment center looked like just the place for Michelle Holley's youngest daughter to kick heroin. Instead, as with dozens of other Florida substance abuse treatment facilities, the owner was more interested in defrauding insurance companies by keeping addicts hooked, her family says.

At the end of September, the National Flood Insurance Program will expire unless Congress acts to re-authorize its funding. Many in the real estate and insurance industries say they're cautiously optimistic the federal flood insurance subsidy will be kept in place, but there’s no guarantee amid the chaotic climate in Washington. 

Protesters gathered outside a sold out fundraiser in Altamonte Springs Tuesday night waving signs that read “Stop hiding,” and “Hold a town hall.” They hoped to make a statement for Senator Marco Rubio, who was delivering the keynote address at the Seminole County Republicans Lincoln Day dinner.

Ticket prices for the sold-out fundraiser started at $150 and went up to $3,000 for a special reception and a seat at the VIP table.

An Okaloosa County man is suing a North Florida hospital over what he calls unreasonable hospital bills. The case comes after North Okaloosa Medical Center charged George Washington MacNeil $41,000 for post-car crash CT scans.

Imagine being stranded without a ride to the doctor or arriving hours late to medical appointments that your life literally depends on. Those are Florida patients’ most common grievances with a company the state pays to arrange medical transportation for people with disabilities.  


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