health

The Trump administration early Thursday initiated a pivotal change in the Medicaid program, announcing that for the first time the federal government will allow states to test work requirements as a condition for coverage.

The day Dr. Roberto Montenegro finished his Ph.D. was memorable. But not for the right reasons.

"I still cringe when I think about it," says Montenegro.

It had started well. His colleagues at UCLA had taken him and his girlfriend (now wife) out to a fancy restaurant to celebrate.

HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, has claimed more than 35 million lives across the globe. In the US, the CDC estimates roughly 40,000 new cases of HIV infection are diagnosed annually. South Florida has some of the highest number of HIV cases per capita in the nation. That's led state health officials to pushing for regular testing for anyone under the age of 65 with free testing events this month.

Gage Skidmore/Wikimedia Commons

The 2016 presidential election generated a lot of stress. But for those in ethnic and religious groups in the middle of the debate, the stress could be affecting their health.  

Exposure to lead as a child can affect an adult decades later, according to a study out Tuesday that suggests a link between early childhood lead exposure and a dip in a person's later cognitive ability and socioeconomic status.

Lead in the United States can come from lots of sources: old, peeling paint; contaminated soil; or water that's passed through lead pipes. Before policies were enacted to get rid of lead in gasoline, it could even come from particles in the fumes that leave car tailpipes.

In a series of recent interviews, President Donald Trump's longtime personal physician Dr. Harold N. Bornstein told The New York Times that our new commander in chief has what amounts to a pretty unremarkable medical chart.

Emil Girardi moved to San Francisco on New Year's Eve in 1960. He loved everything about the city: the energy, the people and the hills. And, of course, the bars, where Girardi mixed drinks for most of his adult life.

About 10 years ago, the 83-year-old New York native had a stroke and collapsed on the sidewalk near his Nob Hill home. Everything changed.

"I didn't want to go out of the house," Girardi recalled, adding he only felt comfortable "going from the bedroom to the dining room."

He'd started to fear the city's streets — and growing older.

healthcare.gov

A new report ranks Florida as the nation's 36th healthiest state.

Marketplace Enrollment Still Important

Dec 13, 2016

Since Republicans have plans to repeal the federal health law, should consumers still sign up for next year’s coverage? And if the health law marketplaces disappear, might Medicare eligibility be expanded? Here are answers to some recent questions from readers.

Should I Trust Wikipedia With My Health?

Nov 8, 2016

Dr. James Heilman isn't an easy man to get hold of — he kept offering us odd, off-hour windows of availability to do a phone interview. When we finally connected, he explained: He works the night shift as an emergency room physician in British Columbia. He also puts in time as a clinical assistant professor in emergency medicine.

And then there's the 60 — count 'em, 60! — hours a week he toils away editing Wikipedia, the massive online encyclopedia written and edited by, well, anyone who wants to give it a whirl.

Ask a bunch of people why they don't get enough physical activity and you're likely to hear: "I have no time."

CDC Using New Rapid Response Teams To Fight Zika

Sep 14, 2016
CDC

It was a call that public health officials were dreading, but for which they had prepared. An elderly man in Salt Lake City died after contracting the Zika virus, the first fatality from the disease in the continental United States. His son, who had been a caregiver, also had become sick, but health officials did not know how.

I encounter claims that humans were designed to eat meat — that it's in our genes, that we have teeth made for eating meat, that we need meat to get all the right nutrients — all the time in casual conversation and in media in stronger and weaker versions.

Poor people who reside in expensive, well-educated cities such as San Francisco tend to live longer than low-income people in less affluent places, according to a study of more than a billion Social Security and tax records.

Kids Count Florida

The latest Kids Count report from the Annie E. Casey Foundation shows that childhood poverty and family unemployment were major factors behind Florida's rank of 37th in the country for child well-being.

Lakeland Regional Medical Center

Lakeland Regional Medical Center is embarking on a two-year building spree.

The independent, non-profit hospital will close on $180 million in tax-exempt bonds Thursday to pay for $297 million in construction over the next two years.

The hospital, located off Interstate 4 between Tampa and Orlando, will add a new eight-story women and children’s pavilion, expand its emergency department and build an inpatient rehab center. Since 2000, the city of Lakeland’s population has jumped 25 percent, just shy of 100,000 residents.

Your Weekly Dose of Health Humor

Jan 30, 2015
Jonny Hawkins

Your Dose of Health Humor comes to you every Friday.

U.S. News and World Report

U.S. News and World Report has released its annual guide to the best adult and children’s hospitals around the United States.

As usual, Bascom Palmer Eye Institute at the University of Miami topped the category of ophthalmology.  None of Florida’s children’s hospitals made the top three in any specialty category nationwide.

LaCrai Mitchell/State Impact Florida

The Florida Senate and the Florida House have passed their budgets for the 2014 legislative session.

From a Florida Senate news release, here is a look at the health funding in the Senate’s $74.9 billion budget:

Health and Human Services

Lottie Watts

  For the first time, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation is including the time spent in a car getting to and from work as a factor that influences health in its County Health Rankings.

The addition of the commuting measures comes out of a number of different studies, according to Dr. Roderick King, executive director of the Florida Public Health Institute.   

A study about the impact of the 2008 Oregon Medicaid expansion on hospital emergency department visits doesn’t actually tell us much about the Affordable Care Act, consultant Paul Gionfriddo writes at his website, Our Health Policy Matters. Gionfriddo details why he thinks the study is more history than news.

New York Times

Studies that set out to answer the pressing question of whether walking or running offers more health benefits found that both do, but the benefits are not the same -- particularly for those who want to prevent weight gain. As the New York Times reports, a published survey of more than 15,000 walkers and 32,000 runners found that the runners were thinner than the walkers overall and maintained their smaller waistlines better over a six-year period.

At 7 a.m. on a Monday morning, poor people who don’t qualify for government health programs such as Medicaid are lined up outside a health department building on a busy street in St. Petersburg. 

Some lean against the wall; others sit on the ground, too sick to stand. 

At 7:30, the doors will open and those who are waiting will rush – or limp – inside to take a number. Lucky ones will get to see a doctor. First-come, first-served.

The Florida Legislature ended its 2013 session without making a move on expanding health care in the state. But that doesn't mean there won't be health insurance changes in Florida. Carol Gentry of Health News Florida talked with WUSF's Craig Kopp about what happens now. 

NPR

Florida is one of the places where you can lose out on a job offer if you’re a smoker. On the latest edition of Freakonomics Radio from NPR’s Marketplace, Stephen Dubner explains the implications of laws that allow employers to refuse to hire an applicant if they smoke. 

 

At his site Our Health Policy Matters, consultant Paul Gionfriddo lists the public health initiatives that have had the biggest impact during his lifetime.   

Miami Herald

As millions of baby boomers age, questions abound regarding their health and how to care for them, the Sarasota Herald-Tribune reports. As the Miami Herald points out, there may not be enough employees to provide in-home care for them.