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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

Workers' Comp Drops Off The Legislative Map

Oct 6, 2017

Just a year after dire predictions that the state's economy was in peril due to rising insurance costs, Florida businesses could see an average 9.3 percent reduction in workers' compensation premiums in the coming year under a rate filing Insurance Commissioner David Altmaier will consider later this month.

Broward Nursing Home Expands Lawsuit Against State

Oct 6, 2017

A Broward County nursing home has expanded a lawsuit challenging moves by Gov. Rick Scott's administration that effectively shut down the facility after residents died following Hurricane Irma.

The company that wants to hold the first U.S. trial of genetically modified mosquitoes in the Florida Keys and Keys residents who oppose the trial don't agree on much.

But representatives from both sides said Thursday they are happy with the recent announcement that federal oversight of the proposed trial will be moved from the Food and Drug Administration to the Environmental Protection Agency.

"We think it's a good thing," said Derric Nimmo, principal scientist at Oxitec, the company that has developed a genetically modified Aedes aegypti mosquito.

U.S. Food and Drug Administration officials say genetically modified mosquitoes are not "drugs" and should be regulated by environmental authorities.

Companies offering insurance on Florida’s health care marketplace are increasing individual premiums by $208 dollars a month on average next year.

A team of researchers has prevented Zika virus infection in monkeys —and they hope the new approach can be developed for use in pregnant women.

The small experimental trial found that monkeys given a cocktail of known Zika antibodies—special proteins the immune system makes to stop a virus—did not develop Zika after they were exposed to the virus.

In the hours before Hurricane Irma came barreling towards Florida, Gloria Guity and her adult children went to five different shelters before they arrived at Miami Edison Senior High School.

“Here is better than where we were,” Guity, 76, said sitting at a cafeteria table. “Here I told them to put me next to the bathroom so at least I can take them to the bathroom.”

The USDA is recalling more than 38 thousand pounds of ground turkey processed in North Carolina and distributed to stores in nine states, including Florida and Georgia.

Health Coach Sues Florida Department Of Health

Oct 4, 2017

A Florida health coach is suing the state Department of Health because she was forced to shut down her diet advice business.

Anxiety is high among leaders at community health centers after Congress failed to meet a deadline to reauthorize their funding over the weekend.


The federal government is expanding the length of the open enrollment period for Medicare and Obamacare health insurance policies in Florida and other states impacted by disaster.

Orlando Health officials have done six presentations in Las Vegas in the last year about how to respond to a mass shooting — including an emergency room doctor giving an educational presentation to University Medical Center Las Vegas.

Stephanie Colombini / WUSF Public Media

Manatee and Sarasota Counties have seen overdose deaths from drugs like heroin, fentanyl and carfentanil spike in the past few years. At the same time, the number of children being removed from their homes and placed into the area’s foster care system has skyrocketed. There’s a connection between the increases.

Agency Pushed To Give Go-Ahead To Edible Marijuana

Oct 3, 2017

A medical marijuana operator is demanding that the Florida Department of Health develop a regulation so vendors can begin processing and selling edible marijuana products to patients.

Proposal Seeks To Ensure Nursing Home Air Conditioning

Oct 3, 2017

Amid continuing fallout from the deaths of residents of a Broward County nursing home after Hurricane Irma, a key state senator has filed a bill that would seek to prevent lengthy air-conditioning outages at nursing homes and assisted living facilities.

Judge Says Abortion Law Violates Free Speech

Oct 3, 2017

Calling it a “naked effort to impede speech on a disfavored topic,” a federal judge has blocked provisions of a sweeping Florida abortion law from going into effect.

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday declined to take up an appeal by a Jacksonville-based hospital system about the disclosure of records in medical-malpractice cases.

North Florida Congressman Al Lawson is launching his Let’s Feed America campaign, which aims to reduce hunger by expanding eligibility and making it easier for those in need to receive access to food. Lawson says 1 out of 4 people in the fifth congressional district have been on the SNAP Program or food stamps this year.

Florida Governor Rick Scott is promising to make the opioid crisis a top priority in the coming legislative session.

A federal judge has blocked a Florida law that would require people and groups that provide abortion advice to register with the state and furnish women with a detailed explanation of the procedure and alternatives.


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