Lynn Hatter

Lynn Hatter is a  Florida A&M University graduate with a bachelor’s degree in journalism. Lynn has served as reporter/producer for WFSU since 2007 with education and health care issues as her key coverage areas.  She is an award-winning member of the Capital Press Corps and has participated in the NPR Kaiser Health News Reporting Partnership and NPR Education Initiative.  When she’s not working, Lynn spends her time watching sci-fi and action movies, writing her own books, going on long walks through the woods, traveling and exploring antique stores. Follow Lynn Hatter on Twitter: @HatterLynn.

Phone: (850) 487-3086

A decade ago, a group of providers sued the state, charging Florida’s Medicaid program shortchanged medical and dental care for kids. Proponents said Medicaid Managed Care was supposed to make it better, but five years into the new system, the legislature is poised to remove dental coverage for kids and roll it into a separate program.

Scientists are trying to understand whether and how the Zika virus might be causing birth defects. Now researchers at Florida State University in collaboration with Johns Hopkins, say their work has moved a step closer to determining if there is a link between the virus and microcephaly.

Florida lawmakers seem ready to give some terminally ill Floridians access to medical marijuana. But some medical marijuana expansion supporters are already setting their sights on November.

Governor Rick Scott has raised the profile of balanced billing in the healthcare system and now the Florida legislature is trying to tamp down on it. A Senate bill limiting how and when hospitals can charge patients for out-of-network services is on its way to the chamber floor.

A Florida Senate health panel has killed a bill granting a new exemption to state hospital licensure rules.

In the run-up to Tuesday’s meeting, some questioned surrounded whether Florida Surgeon General John Armstrong would be confirmed. Armstrong’s been under fire for decreasing enrollment in the Children's Medical Services program, rising HIV infections and staff cuts in local health departments.  The Senate Health Policy Committee narrowly confirmed him on a 5-to-4 vote.

One Florida lawmaker's effort to provide clear guidance for end-of-life care turned into a conversation on death, and euthanasia. Republican Senator Jeff Brandes’ bill would lead to the creation of a portable form patients and their doctors fill out to make sure the patients' wishes are followed.

As lawmakers grapple with healthcare costs, they’re taking another look at rules governing where health care centers can be built. Those rules are called certificate of need. A scaled-down version of a bill addressing certificate of need is in play, but it’s not without controversy.

A Florida House panel has approved a measure that would let consumers purchase health insurance across state lines. But not everyone is on board with the idea.

The Florida Hospital Association has unveiled a new site dedicated to helping consumers understand costs. The website, MissionToCare.org, pulls information from both the state and federal governments to clear up the financial picture.

Florida’s nursing profession could see some new recruits.  A plan to let Florida join a multi-state licensure compact is working its way through the legislature.

The only thing Florida lawmakers must get done during the legislative session is pass a balanced budget. But it’s tricky ironing out all the numbers. And  a big part of laying out a budget is determining how much to spend when it comes to healthcare.

The Florida Department of Health is moving closer to re-opening the healthcare program for some of the state’s sickest kids. And that could eventually mean some of the 9,000 children dropped from the program could re-enroll.

The Florida Department of Health is floating a “compromise” on how it determines eligibility for the Children’s Medical Services Program. CMS is designed for low-income kids with chronic and serious medical conditions.

A non-partisan healthcare think tank is warning increased price transparency may not be a silver-bullet in bringing down costs. The discussion comes as Florida searches for ways to address rising healthcare budget needs.

Some Florida lawmakers say the state’s pill mill crackdown has gone too far. Florida used to be known as a pill mill capital but the state cracked down on unscrupulous clinics, leaving legitimate patients to struggle with getting prescriptions filled.

Standards for hospitals that perform heart surgery on children are becoming a focus of the Florida legislature. The move comes after a CNN report last Summer found nine infants died after heart surgery at West Palm Beach's St Mary's Hospital over four years.

Florida lawmakers want to curb rising costs in healthcare. But they’re at odds over how to do that. Several plans have been put forth to improve patient access, but it’s not certain whether they’ll do much to help the bigger issue of cost.

Florida lawmakers are bracing for budget holes despite figures showing the state could end up with another year of surplus. Alternative healthcare proposals making their way through the Florida legislature as lawmakers look for ways to cut health costs without accepting billions in federal dollars to expand Medicaid.

Florida lawmakers are bracing for budget holes despite figures showing the state could end up with another year of surplus.  The cost driver: healthcare.

Healthcare concerns, more specifically cost problems—are starting to take over conversations at the capital.

Florida lawmakers are taking another look at the office of Vocational Rehab. A proposal to overhaul the office amid low job placement rates, failed last year. According to a state report, the office that helps disabled Floridians find jobs, succeeds less than half the time.

Governor Rick Scott is pushing for greater healthcare cost transparency in hospitals.  The move comes as Florida faces the loss of more federal health care funding next year, and growing concerns about the state’s healthcare costs.

Florida Legal Services and Disability Rights Florida want the state to clarify how it handles social service applications from people who are disabled. The organizations are concerned thousands of disabled Floridians can’t apply for food stamps or other services in the state’s online system.

The Florida Retail Federation has launched a private health insurance exchange for its members. The exchange allows businesses to shop for group coverage plans and lets employees sign up.

Marijuana bills are piling up ahead of the upcoming lawmaking session and one North Florida Democrat is sponsoring an effort to legalize the plant for all users.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce says Florida’s lawsuit climate is among the worst in the nation—for businesses. The business lobby association is pushing state legislators to crack down on trial lawyers—including one big name in the industry.

Florida Blue is introducing hybrid plans into Florida’s Affordable Care Act marketplace. They  could give consumers both more and fewer choices in providers.

Florida’s Medicaid costs will soon take up about half of the state’s new revenue. And enrollment in the program continues to grow. The increasing costs of the program has the state’s chief economist putting part of the blame on prescription drugs.

Florida’s health insurance market for next year is beginning to take shape, and there will be cost increases. But  that’s not what’s raising eyebrows. In Florida, managed care health plans will dominate the market place, and the emergence of a new system  has some wondering, what is an EPO?

A revamped health care agenda is starting to take shape ahead of next year’s lawmaking session. Last regular session The Florida House and Senate clashed over whether to expand Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act.

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