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

Lawmakers Back Payment In Death, Injury Cases

May 17, 2017

Saying the Florida Department of Children and Families didn't do its job, state lawmakers last month approved paying $3.75 million in a 2011 child-abuse case that drew national headlines.

Florida's lieutenant governor joined hunters paid by the state to stalk and shoot invasive Burmese pythons in the Everglades.

The war chest for Florida Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam continues to swell as the leading GOP contender for governor wraps up his official first week of campaigning.

Progressive groups are keeping a close eye on the Constitution Revision Commission, and this week, they’re more worried than ever. It's the prestigious panel that meets every 20 years to put measures directly on the ballot.

While lawmakers weigh whether to call a special session for medical marijuana, dispensaries are pushing ahead.  One grower is preparing to open its first retail outlet.

Health Officials Look To Halt Smokable Marijuana

May 16, 2017

The Florida Department of Health on Monday ordered a medical-marijuana operator to stop selling a “whole flower” product sold for use in vaporizers but which can easily be smoked, saying the product is not permitted.

Judge Backs Heart Transplant Program

May 16, 2017

Nicklaus Children's Hospital in South Florida should be allowed to open a pediatric heart-transplant program, despite objections from state regulators and another hospital, an administrative law judge ruled Monday.

Rain Does Little To Dampen Fire Threats

May 16, 2017

Rain over the weekend helped slow the growth of wildfires in some parts of Florida, but other blazes continued to grow, especially in the southern part of the state.

To lower the potential spread of disease, state wildlife officials want Florida residents to keep their bird feeders clean. They’re already getting multiple reports about sick or dead songbirds of a certain species in the North Florida area in the last month.

Trump’s Mastery Of Health Care Under Scrutiny

May 15, 2017

Lost in all the coverage of the firing of FBI Director James Comey last week were a pair of in-depth interviews President Donald Trump gave that included lengthy comments on health care — one with Time  magazine and the other with The Economist.

A Florida medical marijuana dispensary says it is not violating state law by selling cannabis that could potentially be broken down and made into pot that can be smoked.

Florida hospitals are intently watching the negotiations between the state and federal government over health care funding. The state has been talking to the federal government about renewing a wavier for health care services for low-income Floridians.

As a neonatal intensive care nurse, Lauren Bloomstein had been taking care of other people's babies for years. Finally, at 33, she was expecting one of her own. The prospect of becoming a mother made her giddy, her husband, Larry, recalled recently— "the happiest and most alive I'd ever seen her."

Lawsuit Targets Prison System Over Hepatitis Care

May 12, 2017

Three inmates filed a class-action lawsuit Thursday alleging that the Florida Department of Corrections is failing to provide proper care to thousands of prisoners diagnosed with hepatitis C.

Input Sought On Medical Pot Special Session

May 12, 2017

Amid growing demands for a special session on medical marijuana and harsh criticism of lawmakers' failure to reach agreement on the issue, Senate President Joe Negron sent a memo to his members Thursday seeking input on the possibility of sealing a deal with the House.

According to the Annie E. Casey Foundation, more than half of Florida’s public school students are eligible for free or reduced priced meals during the academic year. Yet during summer vacation, the need for healthy, fresh foods can actually increase. But some local community groups are teaming up to try and fill in the gap.

Governor Rick Scott has signed a bill into law seeking to make it easier for more abuse victims to testify in court through the use of therapy dogs.

Florida’s medical examiners are seeing a precipitous rise in fentanyl deaths.  They recently published their interim 2016 report on drug-related fatalities.

Governor Rick Scott’s recent emergency declaration means some 3,000 addicts in Florida will soon be getting access to opioid blockers like methadone, suboxone and naltrexone, health officials say.

Florida House Speaker Richard Corcoran has joined the growing number of those calling for a special legislative session to finalize rules for implementing the state's medical marijuana amendment.

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