Local News

Legislature To Resume Budget, Health Fight

With a looming deadline, Florida legislators return to the state Capitol this week promising to do what they couldn't during the 60-day regular session that ended May 1.And that's pass a new state budget that covers everything from money for schools and hospitals to paying for child abuse investigations.Legislative leaders are already promising that they will pass a budget during the 20-day session that starts Monday. They have until the end of June or parts of state government could be shut...
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National News

Training Doctors To Talk About Vaccines Fails To Sway Parents

As more and more parents choose to skip vaccinations for their children, public health professionals and researchers have been looking at new ways to ease the concerns of parents who are hesitant.But that turns out to be tough to do. Studies have found that simply educating parents about the safety and efficacy of vaccines doesn't increase the likelihood that they will get children vaccinated.Since numerous studies show that doctors are the most trusted communicators of information about...
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Florida News

Feds Wary Of State's LIP Plan

The federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services is wary of approving a state proposal for helping fund hospitals without knowing more about Florida's plan for the future, an official said Friday.The statement came as the two sides try to work out an agreement on how to fund hospitals under a program known as the Low Income Pool, or LIP. Funding for the program will decline to $1 billion in the 2015-16 budget year, which begins July 1.LIP includes $2.2 billion in the current year. The...
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 Humana shares soared well beyond all-time high prices Friday afternoon on speculation that the company, one of the nation's biggest health insurers and Florida's largest Medicare HMO company, might be up for sale.

Analysts have been discussing for a few weeks the possibility that large health insurers flush with cash may be hunting for a big acquisition. Deal-friendly low interest rates and expectations for another wave of consolidation also are fueling the speculation.

Dr. Susan MacManus on Special Session

2 hours ago

Lawmakers are returning to Tallahassee today to start a "special session". The issue is over "health care spending."

The Senate has proposed an alternative to Medicaid expansion under the federal health law, but "House leadership" has said it wants no part of it.

giveawayboy via Flickr

State lawmakers are back in Tallahassee today to develop and pass the state budget that eluded them during the regular session that ended a month ago. But there are a lot of things that have to happen first and the first one of those is an agreement on healthcare.

Hurricane Season Starts Quiet; Rainy Season Doesn't

3 hours ago
WUFT

The 2015 Hurricane Season begins on a quiet note, which is nothing unusual. No tropical storm formation is expected in the next five days per The National Hurricane Center. The first week of June also signals the beginning of the rainy season for most areas. And like clockwork, the afternoon showers and thunderstorms will be developing nearly every day along sea breezes from both coasts.

It was a monster.

First, it hit the Caribbean. And once it touched down in the United States, its victims were mostly African-American. When the waters rose and the levee broke, there was nowhere to go. 

This isn't New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina 10 years ago. This is Palm Beach County during the Great Okeechobee Hurricane of 1928. It was one of the deadliest storms in U.S. history, and yet it's been largely forgotten.

  

With a looming deadline, Florida legislators return to the state Capitol this week promising to do what they couldn't during the 60-day regular session that ended May 1.

And that's pass a new state budget that covers everything from money for schools and hospitals to paying for child abuse investigations.

Legislative leaders are already promising that they will pass a budget during the 20-day session that starts Monday. They have until the end of June or parts of state government could be shut down.

Experimental Drug Bill Awaits Scott Action

5 hours ago

The Florida House this week sent a bill (HB 269) to Gov. Rick Scott that would allow terminally ill patients to have access to experimental drugs.

The bill, filed by Rep. Ray Pilon, R-Sarasota, drew significant discussion during this year's regular legislative session, with Pilon and other supporters saying it could help people with diseases such as cancer.

The bill focuses on drugs that have been through what is known as "phase 1" of a clinical trial but have not been approved for general use by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

Drug Database Could Get State Funding

5 hours ago

A House budget bill would allow tax dollars to be used next year to administer the state's prescription-drug database, after years of debate about the issue.

The proposal, which would be in effect only for the 2015-16 fiscal year, is included in what is known as a budget "implementing" bill (HB 3A). That bill, along with the overall budget, will be considered during a special legislative session that starts Monday.

Feds Wary Of State's LIP Plan

5 hours ago

The federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services is wary of approving a state proposal for helping fund hospitals without knowing more about Florida's plan for the future, an official said Friday.

The statement came as the two sides try to work out an agreement on how to fund hospitals under a program known as the Low Income Pool, or LIP. Funding for the program will decline to $1 billion in the 2015-16 budget year, which begins July 1.

Governor Rick Scott recently gave the nod to several priorities of the state’s first responder unions. Now, those unions are speaking out on what they’d like Florida lawmakers to include in the still-to-be-considered state budget.

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