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

Sugar Farmers Balk At Selling Land For Reservoir

Feb 7, 2017

Sugar farmers who own land in an area targeted by Senate President Joe Negron for a reservoir south of Lake Okeechobee said Monday they won't be "willing sellers" to the state.

Proposal Seeks Repeal Of Certificate Of Need Laws

Feb 6, 2017

Lining up with Gov. Rick Scott and House leaders, Sen. Rob Bradley, R-Fleming Island, filed a proposal Friday that would eliminate the state's "certificate of need" regulatory process, which helps determine whether hospitals, nursing homes and hospice facilities are built.

Republicans are increasingly talking about repairing former President Barack Obama's health care overhaul, a softening of tone that comes as their drive to fulfill a keystone campaign promise that encounters disunity, drooping momentum and uneasy voters.

Managed Care Contracting Begins To Move Forward

Feb 6, 2017

Health plans that want to compete for contracts in Florida's Medicaid managed-care system face a Feb. 13 deadline for signaling their interest to the state Agency for Health Care Administration.

In the upcoming legislative session, lawmakers will debate how to implement the state’s new medical marijuana regulations. 71% of voters approved a measure to allow more patients to access the drug. One of the top fundraisers behind the effort wants to see more competition in the industry.

Quincy Walters/WUSF

Republican Rep. Gus Bilirakis held a town hall Saturday, to hear ideas about replacing the Affordable Care Act. 

But he was met with opposition as about every one of the 200 people gathered at The Centre of Palm Harbor were in support of Obamacare. Many came to voice their concerns with the law's potential repeal. 

Through years of acrimony over the relative merits of Obamacare, one kind of health insurance has remained steady, widespread and relatively affordable: Employer-sponsored plans.

Job-based medical plans still cover more Americans than any other type, typically with greater benefits and lower out-of-pocket expense. Recent cost increases for this sort of coverage have been a tiny fraction of those for Obamacare plans for individuals.

The University of South Florida will use a $1.1 million dollar state grant for Zika research to look at how the virus infects fetuses.

A state lawmaker wants Florida schools to include the dangers of human trafficking in their health education curriculum. That's on top of other statewide efforts to help fight the modern day slavery practice.

Federal health officials may be about to get greatly enhanced powers to quarantine people, as part of an ongoing effort to stop outbreaks of dangerous contagious diseases.

The new powers are outlined in a set of regulations the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention published late last month to update the agency's quarantine authority for the first time since the 1940s.

Florida Republican Congressman Matt Gaetz is reportedly drafting a bill to abolish the Environmental Protection Agency.

There’s a lot of confusion in Florida when it comes to medical marijuana.

There are existing laws, Amendment 2 that was passed by voters but still needs to go through the legislature, and somewhere in between, the Florida Department of Health is issuing rules.

State Money Going To Universities For Zika Research

Feb 2, 2017

Researchers at eight universities, Moffitt Cancer Center and The Scripps Research Institute will share $25 million in grants as the state looks to combat the mosquito-borne Zika virus, Gov. Rick Scott's office announced Wednesday.

A new bill filed Wednesday has the potential to completely revamp Florida’s medical marijuana system – and remove caps on the number of growers.

Justices Rule Medical Documents Must Be Disclosed

Feb 1, 2017

In a ruling that could have implications for medical-malpractice cases across the state, the Florida Supreme Court on Tuesday said a Jacksonville hospital system was required to provide records to a patient's family because of a 2004 constitutional amendment.

Scott Seeks Money To Battle Zika

Feb 1, 2017

Florida is bracing for another round of the mosquito-borne Zika virus. In his proposed $83.5 billion budget released Tuesday, Gov. Rick Scott included $1.9 million to fund 21 epidemiologists to work in county health departments, along with providing surveillance and outbreak control.

Gov. Rick Scott is calling for $60 million for the Indian River Lagoon and Caloosahatchee River in response to last summer’s toxic algae blooms.


'PIP' Repeal Proposals Re-Emerge

Jan 31, 2017

Florida's no-fault auto insurance system could be nearing the end of its road.

UF Trustees Seek Better Accounting On Shands Debt

Jan 31, 2017

University of Florida trustees will have more oversight over borrowing by UF Health Shands Hospital and its affiliated organizations under a policy adopted Monday.

While talk of repeal and replace has dominated the recent conversation about the Affordable Care Act, consumers have quietly been signing up in record numbers.  

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