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Healthy State tells the stories you need to know to stay well, with a special focus on Florida.We'll bring you the latest fitness trends, new research on preventing and treating disease, and information about how health policy impacts your pocketbook.We report on health using all the tools at our disposal -- video, audio, photos and text -- to bring these stories to life.Healthy State is a project of WUSF Public Media in Tampa and is heard on public radio stations throughout Florida. It also is available online at wusfnews.org.

Town Hall Brawls to Return?


This month, Democrats say, they won't sit out the summer Congressional recess. They're planning to show up at Town Hall-style meetings sponsored by conservatives to present an alternative view. 

In the past, Florida's August meetings have been dominated by Republicans and the Tea Party, denouncing Obamacare. It had an effect in polls, turning the public against the law even as most of its main features  -- when polled separately -- drew approval.

On Friday, while House Republicans stage their 40th vote to repeal the law, a vote that won't go anywhere in the Senate, two groups that back the ACA will hold a telephone news conference for reporters in Florida. It will feature Jackie Lee, who served as Florida campaign strategist for President Obama in 2008 and 2012.

As the Tampa Tribune reports, the grass-roots effort of Obamacare defenders will target 10 states, including Florida.

In South Florida on Wednesday, as the South Florida Sun-Sentinel reports, U.S. Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz spoke up for the ACA at a center for cancer patients and their families.  She is a Democrat from Weston.

Meanwhile, Florida's Republican U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio spoke out in favor of shutting down the government if that's what it takes to repeal the law.

Rubio and other Republicans "are on the wrong side of this," said Brad Woodhouse of Americans United for Change in a conference call on Thursday, the Tampa Bay Times reported.

Carol Gentry, founder and special correspondent of Health News Florida, has four decades of experience covering health finance and policy, with an emphasis on consumer education and protection.After serving two years as a Peace Corps volunteer in Colombia, Gentry worked for a number of newspapers including The Wall Street Journal, St. Petersburg Times (now Tampa Bay Times), the Tampa Tribune and Orlando Sentinel. She was a Kaiser Foundation Media Fellow in 1994-95 and earned an Master's in Public Administration at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government in 1996. She directed a journalism fellowship program at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for four years.Gentry created Health News Florida, an independent non-profit health journalism publication, in 2006, and served as editor until September, 2014, when she became a special correspondent. She and Health News Florida joined WUSF in 2012.
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