public health

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

The flu descended on Connie Gabaldon like a fog, she recalled, clouding her mind and compromising her judgment. It progressed to chest and back pain, the aches perhaps made worse by a fall the 66-year-old had while riding the bus in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Gabaldon is homeless. When she went to the emergency room in late January, doctors told her she also had pneumonia, a sinus infection and the flu.

Training Tomorrow's Doctors: Graduate Medical Education in Florida 2017

The Trump administration is embarking on a sweeping effort to redefine civil rights in health care, with critics accusing the Department of Health and Human Services of sidestepping the rights of patients to soothe a far smaller constituency: conservative nurses, hospitals and other caregivers.

National Institutes of Health

As lawmakers face another deadline this week for passing legislation to keep the federal government open, one of the outstanding issues is long-term funding for a key health care safety-net program.

Hospitals’ Best-Laid Plans Upended By Disaster

Jan 24, 2018
U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service / Flickr

It was 3:35 a.m. and flames from a massive Northern California wildfire licked at the back of a Santa Rosa hospital.

When Food Stamps Pass As Tickets To Better Health

Jan 17, 2018
Courtney Perkes / Kaiser Health News

Rebeca Gonzalez grew up eating artichokes from her grandmother’s farm in the central Mexican state of Tlaxcala. But for years after emigrating to the U.S., she did not feed them to her own kids because the spiky, fibrous vegetables were too expensive on this side of the border.

For 17 years, Chalfonte LeNee Queen suffered periodic episodes of violent retching and abdominal pain that would knock her off her feet for days, sometimes leaving her writhing on the floor in pain.

Updated Monday 12/18/17 at 11 a.m.

State Rep. Clay Yarborough, R-Jacksonville, is co-sponsoring a bill recognizing pornography as the cause of a public health crisis. The bill’s primary sponsor is Ross Spano, R-Dover.

In April 2014, state and federal drug agents raided Jeffrey Campbell’s medical clinic in Jeffersonville, Indiana. Police cars blocked the parking lot as bewildered patients scattered and the agents carted off boxes of records from the doctor’s office.

Google Maps

The Food and Drug Administration last month sent criminal investigation agents with search warrants into nine storefronts across Central Florida that help customers order drugs from pharmacies in Canada and overseas at big discounts.

Pierre de Champs / Flickr

After Hurricane Harvey flooded her city of Houston in August, Dr. Jennifer McQuade planned to donate socks to those affected. Instead, surprised by the lack of medical care at a nearby shelter, McQuade, an oncologist, became the unofficial leader of a group of physicians and mothers providing emergency aid at the George R. Brown Convention Center in Houston. She triaged patients, solicited donations and recruited more doctors to join.

Few people were surprised last week when the Trump administration issued a rule to make it easier for some religious employers to opt out of offering no-cost prescription birth control to their female employees under the Affordable Care Act.

For Some Refugees, Women’s Health Care Is A Culture Shock

Sep 28, 2017
AP

Dinnertime is nearing, and the kitchen in this tidy home in Buffalo, New York, is buzzing. Lamyaa Manty, a 29-year-old Iraqi refugee, wears a neon-pink T-shirt and stirs a big pot of eggplant, onion, potatoes and tomatoes on the stove, a staple of Iraqi cooking called tepsi.

Minorities Shown To Get An Excess Of Ineffective Care

Jun 9, 2017
Associated Press

Minority patients face a double whammy: Not only are they more likely to miss out on effective medical treatments than white patients, but, according to a new study, they’re also more likely to receive an abundance of ineffective services.

Satori World Medical / Flickr

Does investing in public housing keep people healthier?

People are still dying of cancer linked to asbestos, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control says, despite decades of regulations meant to limit dangerous exposure.

Starting in 1971, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration has regulated how much asbestos workers can be exposed to, because it contains tiny fibers that can cause lung disease or cancer if they are swallowed or inhaled.

GOP Plan Aims To Curb Medicaid, Expand State Options

Mar 23, 2017

For all its populist design, the House Republicans’ latest proposal to overhaul federal Medicaid funding creates financial risks for states and could leave some enrollees worse off.

Dramatic changes in Medicaid are a big part of the House bill to partially repeal the Affordable Care Act that’s steaming toward a floor vote scheduled for Thursday.

CDC

Influenza season is at its peak nationwide, and Florida is no exception. That's obvious on the map at the Centers for Disease Control website.

Andy Teo (Flickr)

Members of the public health community are calling for action on gun violence by shifting the conversation away from gun control.

Debate Continues Over Fluoridation

Sep 26, 2016
Kaiser Health News

Many people take for granted the addition of fluoride into public drinking water systems that aims to prevent tooth decay. It’s a seven-decade-old public health effort. But it’s not nearly as universally accepted.

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.

  The University of Miami held a public forum on Tuesday about human trafficking in the United States.

 

It’s pretty much a rerun of last year: The annual County Health Rankings report shows St. John’s took the top spot for healthiest and Union County - home to Florida State Prison - came in last.

After St. John’s, the report lists the next-healthy as Collier, Seminole, Martin, and Miami-Dade. Least-healthy, after Union County, were Washington, Putnam, Baker and Hamilton.

At his blog Our Health Policy Matters, consultant Paul Gionfriddo laments the proposal by Congress to cut $1 billion from what has already been promised for public health and prevention. After all the dust settled with the Affordable Care Act, the Prevention Fund that was supposed to contain $80 billion had only $15 billion -- and Congress keeps trying to cut more. 

Like radio, public health communication is all about figuring out how to connect with the audience.

New York City is betting that if you're anticipating a night of adventure, you might make use of the Find Condoms NYC app.

The app scans the New York Health Department's list of 3,000 sites that distribute free condoms, and uses a smartphone's GPS to list and map the five closest spots. In the moment, convenience counts.

Health policy consultant Paul Gionfriddo of Lake Worth, who listed the ten best states for health last week in his blog Our Health Policy Matters, now presents his idea of the 10 worst.

He gives a lot of weight to public health and disease prevention, even though most of the dollars in the system go into treatment.

There are actually more than four years' difference in life expectancy between the states at the top of the list and those at the bottom, he writes.

At his blog Our Health Policy Matters, consultant Paul Gionfriddo has his own measuring stick to compare states on how healthy they are.  He gives extra weight to prevention and public health, since those are disproportionately important in affecting community health.

Even though he lives in Florida, Gionfriddo doesn't place the state in the top 10.

Facebook.com

Dr. Homer Rice, who worked for the Florida Department of Health for 36 years and spent the last eight as chief of the Leon County unit, was forced out of his job, the Tallahassee Democrat reported on Thursday.

Gainesville Sun

The Gainesville Rural Women's Health Project, which educates Hispanic women in several rural Florida counties on early detection of breast cancer, is a finalist for a national award, the Gainesville Sun reports. 

Another story in the Sun cites Alachua County’s FluMist vaccine program, which has resulted in fewer emergency room visits for children. 

Just because an over-the-counter product is called a dietary supplement doesn't mean that it's harmless.

Quite a few supplements have been found to include hidden and potentially risky ingredients, including drugs.

A recent study published in JAMA Internal Medicine found 273 recalls of dietary supplements between 2004 and 2012 because they contained drugs that could cause "serious adverse health consequences or death."

South Florida Sun-Sentinel

A state-funded smoking cessation program has been a huge success, Florida health officials say. As the South Florida Sun-Sentinel reports, Tobacco Free Florida has helped 72,000 smokers quit since the program launched in 2007. 

 

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