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

New Lethal Injection Drug Focus Of Execution Fight

Aug 2, 2017

It's not unusual for lawyers representing Death Row prisoners whose execution dates have been set to file last-minute appeals to try to get more time to argue about why their clients should be spared.

State Issues More Medical Marijuana Licenses

Aug 2, 2017

Two more medical-marijuana businesses have joined seven already licensed by the state, and another three are in the works, as the potentially lucrative industry continues to develop.

The state's first sexually-transmitted case of Zika virus in 2017 has been confirmed in Pinellas County.

The Florida Board of Medicine is preparing to vote on rules for doctors recommending medical cannabis.

Updated 4:21 p.m. ET Aug. 1

Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., and Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., announced today that the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions committee will hold bipartisan hearings on ways to stabilize the Affordable Care Act marketplaces for 2018.

The hearings will start the week of Sept. 4. Their aim is to act by Sept. 27, when insurers must sign contracts to sell individual insurance plans on HealthCare.gov for 2018.

State Adds 3 ‘Travel Related’ Zika Cases

Aug 1, 2017

Florida added three new “travel related” Zika cases during the past week, bringing to 116 the number of reported cases of the mosquito-borne virus this year, according to numbers posted Monday on the state Department of Health website.

He led the Florida Seminole Tribe when it challenged the U.S. Supreme Court over gaming on tribal lands. The legal victory helped kick start a gambling industry now estimated at more than $33 billion. Now former Seminole Chief James Billie wants to do for marijuana what the tribes achieved for gaming, aiming to make tribal producers the source for marijuana in a growing number of states that have legalized recreational and medical use of the drug.

In a moment of unexpected high drama, Republicans were stymied once again in their effort to repeal the Affordable Care Act — and they have John McCain to thank for it.

In the early morning hours Friday, the senator showed why he earned the nickname "Maverick" over his long tenure.

United Healthcare Services Inc., which runs the nation’s largest private Medicare Advantage insurance plan, concealed hundreds of complaints of enrollment fraud and other misconduct from federal officials as part of a scheme to collect bonus payments it didn’t deserve, a newly unsealed whistleblower lawsuit alleges.

A chemical used for mosquito control in South Florida has been the source of controversy in recent weeks, after a study showed it could be linked to developmental delays in infants.

Toxic algal blooms have been happening more often in the rivers off Lake Okeechobee. One of the main causes is phosphorous runoff from wastewater and farmland. But a new filter may make algal blooms caused by wastewater a thing of the past. 

While mainland South Florida ramps up its battle against the mosquito that can carry Zika, the Florida Keys has already begun the region's most intensive mosquito control operation.

Earlier this year, the Florida Legislature amended state statutes to phase out waiver programs that allow people with special needs to get Medicaid who wouldn't normally qualify for services.

Slosberg Seeks Tougher Law On Texting While Driving

Jul 27, 2017

State Rep. Emily Slosberg appeared Tuesday night at a Boca Raton City Council meeting as she tries to build local-government support for the Legislature to make texting while driving a primary offense.

When appendicitis struck a young mother vacationing in St. Pete Beach eight years ago, she was rushed to Palms of Pasadena Hospital. There, Dr. Ernest Rehnke removed her appendix.

Florida's senators were split in their votes on the plan to debate repealing and replacing Obamacare.


Florida’s senators split their vote Tuesday to open debate on the Republican replacement of the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare.

Updated at 1:55 p.m. ET

In an emotional return to the Senate floor on Tuesday afternoon, Sen. John McCain admonished the leaders of his party for how they managed the health care bill and called instead for "regular order."

An underwater archaeology site on the bed of the Silver River, in the Silver Springs State Park near Ocala, is home to mammoth bones and other ancient remains dating back 10,000 years ago. First discovered in the 1970s, the history these discoveries revealed were dismissed at the time due to the perceived inaccuracy of underwater archaeology. This summer, a team of archeologists are diving there to "set the record straight."

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are updating their guidance for pregnant women regarding the Zika virus. The new information means asymptomatic pregnant women don't have to get the commonly used IgM test. The announcement comes as public health officials are increasingly worried about the risk of false positives. 

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