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

Florida Supreme Court Hears Arguments About Medical Record Access

Oct 6, 2016

Though the parties reached an eleventh-hour settlement, the Florida Supreme Court on Wednesday plunged into a dispute that could have implications for medical-malpractice cases across the state.

Miami Herald photographer Carl Juste wanted the best possible shot of the mosquito control plane that was aerially spraying Miami Beach.

So just before 6 a.m. on Sunday, Sept. 18, he drove to the top of the parking garage on Collins Avenue and 16th Street, got out of his car and started taking pictures.

C. Diff is a potentially deadly bacteria that killed 29,000 people last year – and too many people are catching the bacteria at Florida hospitals.

Hurricane Matthew Causes Delay In Sarasota County Hospital Case

Oct 5, 2016

The Florida Supreme Court on Tuesday postponed arguments until February in a constitutional battle about a 2003 state law that directed Sarasota County to reimburse private hospitals for indigent care.

Workers’ Comp Rates Set To Rise Starting Dec. 1

Oct 5, 2016

Workers' compensation insurance rates will jump 14.5 percent starting Dec. 1, after a filing Tuesday that carried out a decision by state regulators.

As it enters its seventh year, the Affordable Care Act is facing challenges, leading some to speculate that the law will have to change in order to survive.

President Barack Obama has postponed his appearance at the University of South Florida in Tampa on Wednesday because of Hurricane Matthew.

An agricultural emergency has been declared in the Florida Keys over a fly larvae infestation threatening endangered deer found that are found exclusively in the island chain.

Zika vaccine trials could come to South Florida as early as this winter.

Now that the House and Senate have agreed on a $1.1 billion Zika funding package, research and vaccine development is a federal priority.

A senior government official in Jamaica says people in flood-prone areas of the country are refusing to leave their homes as the outer bands of Hurricane Matthew bring heavy rain and some flooding to parts of the island.

Local Government Minister Desmond McKenzie says one such area is Port Royal near the now-closed international airport in Kingston. McKenzie says the government ordered the area evacuated and sent two buses to help people move. But he says only two adults and two children boarded the bus. Others in the neighborhood wanted to stay and protect their homes.

A measure signed into law by President Obama includes money to help combat the Zika virus. Florida is expected to be one of the areas to get a large amount of the funds. That’s in addition to the millions of dollars in state money Governor Rick Scott has already set aside in the Zika fight. But, questions now remain about when and how the funds will be distributed to help affected Floridians.

State Republican Senator Jack Latvala is fighting the expansion of medical marijuana in the state. Florida voters will decide whether to kickstart the state’s fledging pot industry at the ballot box in November.

Until recently, Miami Beach Botanical Garden was home to more than 2,000 colorful bromeliads.

Federal dollars for new Everglades restoration could flow as early as next year. The money comes from a bill making its way through Congress.

Florida health officials say they will not fight a judge's order that would change the gender on a transgender teen's birth certificate from female to male.

More Zika-car rying mosquitoes have been captured in Miami Beach, this time in a new neighborhood.

The Florida Department of Agriculture said Saturday that it's the sixth time Zika-bearing mosquitoes have been captured in Miami Beach. It was the first capture of Zika-carrying mosquitoes in two weeks.

Zika can cause severe brain-related birth defects, including disastrously small heads, in pregnant women who become infected. The same mosquito species that spreads Zika also transmits dengue fever.

The FBI wants to discover who sent an envelope containing an unknown white powder to the company on whose property a massive sinkhole opened, causing contaminated water and fertilizer to flow into Florida's main drinking water aquifer.

The FBI said Saturday it testing the powder delivered Friday to Mosaic Corp.'s Tampa area headquarters. The powder is being tested to see if it is dangerous.

Pro-Marijuana Group Gets $1M Boost

Oct 3, 2016

Supporters of a constitutional amendment that would broadly legalize medical marijuana in Florida received a $1 million boost this week from a political committee focused on similar initiatives in other states.

After the release of more than 200 million gallons of contaminated water at a Polk County phosphate plant, Senate Majority Leader Bill Galvano said Friday he will lead the Senate's effort to strengthen a state law to make sure Floridians are promptly notified of major pollution threats.

The staff and patients inside Florida's mental hospitals remain victims of preventable violence, according to a newspaper investigation.