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Health News Florida
Every day, hundreds of sick and injured patients walk into free and charitable clinics around the Tampa Bay area in need of a doctor.Many are suffering from chronic conditions, such as diabetes or high blood pressure. Some patients were referred to the clinics by staff at hospitals where they landed after years of neglecting to care for treatable conditions.The clinics allow the patients to pay what they can, or nothing at all. They are staffed by doctors and nurses who volunteer their time. They survive off donations and small grants.Many of the patients have jobs but they are living paycheck to paycheck. None have health insurance, either because they do not qualify for Medicaid or can’t afford private coverage. For these patients, the clinics are often their only option for primary care.

To Solve Homeless Problem, City Group Suggests Psychiatrist

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A group studying homelessness in one Florida city has recommended hiring a psychiatrist to hit the streets, counsel homeless who might have mental problems and administer medication to those who need it.

The Palm Beach Post reports a task force in the city of West Palm Beach was formed after a long run of complaints by business owners and residents, capped by two high-profile stabbings and other crimes by homeless people downtown.

The most daunting challenge facing the city is how to house those homeless who are willing to get off the streets.

The task force estimated the psychiatric service would cost the city $50,000 to $90,000.

In addition to the psychiatrist, the task force recommended creating a drop-in center to provide temporary shelter, medical or mental healthcare.

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Information from: The Palm Beach (Fla.) Post, http://www.pbpost.com