News Service of Florida

Stethoscope and gavel against a white backdrop.
Wikimedia Commons

By News Service of Florida

UF Health Shands Hospital is challenging the state’s preliminary approval of a proposed 42-bed psychiatric hospital in Alachua County. 

Patient in discussion with doctor at a desk.
Daylina Miller/WUSF

By News Service of Florida 

State economists said Friday that about 260,000 low-income, childless Floridians would enroll in the Medicaid program if it were expanded. 

A silouette of a family
Eric Ward / Wikimedia Commons

By News Service of Florida

State economists on Thursday concluded that the number of people being served by the state’s Temporary Assistance for Needy Families program continues to be lower than expected. 

An electron micrograph of the hepatitis A virus, an RNA virus that can survive up to a month at room temperature.
Betty Partin / CDC

News Service of Florida

The number of hepatitis A cases reported to the state Department of Health continues to rise, with the latest data showing that 82 cases were reported between June 30 and July 6. 

Robert Neff (Flickr)

Feeling a little warm lately? You’re not alone.

Tampa Electric Co. customers set a record this week for summer electricity use. 

Florida Kids Count

Florida ranks 37th in the country in child well-being and is “not moving in the right direction,” according to a report released Monday by the Annie E. Casey Foundation.

Mother and baby
Omar Medina Films/Pixabay

The Florida Department of Health is seeking input about how a nutrition program for women, infants and children can be improved and is giving people three weeks to send comments to Tallahassee.


Gov. Ron DeSantis on Thursday received a bill that would authorize needle-exchange programs across the state. 

Gov. Ron DeSantis
News Service of Florida

Gov. Ron DeSantis on Tuesday signed a death warrant for an inmate convicted of committing three murders in Florida, including a Jacksonville murder that sent him to Death Row.

The execution of Gary Ray Bowles is scheduled for Aug. 22 at Florida State Prison, according to documents the governor’s office filed late Tuesday afternoon at the state Supreme Court.

An electron micrograph of the hepatitis A virus, an RNA virus that can survive up to a month at room temperature.
Betty Partin / CDC

The state had 63 cases of hepatitis A reported during the last week of May, bringing the total number of infections this year to 1,373 as of Saturday.

The Florida Department of Health has been encouraging people to get vaccinated to protect themselves against infection. Two doses --- six months apart --- are required. According to a Department of Health report, 96 percent of infections in April involved people who had not been vaccinated.

School resource officer
Tampa Bay Times

An executive order signed by Gov. Ron DeSantis in February helped increase the number of counties participating in a controversial “guardian” program that allows school staff members to be armed on campus, Education Commissioner Richard Corcoran said Thursday. 

Jack Kennard / Wikimedia Creative Commons/

Florida recorded 628 boating accidents in 2018, down 18 percent from a year earlier, according to a new report released by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. 

Prisoners crowding around a table
Florida Department of Corrections

A federal appeals court will hear arguments in August in a legal battle about the Florida Department of Corrections’ handling of a transgender inmate. 

Pinellas County Health Department logo
Pinellas County Health Department

Despite rising hepatitis A rates, Florida public-health programs have been lauded by a national group. 

Nurse escorts elderly man using walker
Wikimedia Commons

The state’s largest nursing-home association sent a letter to Gov. Ron DeSantis asking him to spare from a veto millions of dollars in Medicaid funding for long-term care facilities. Included in the proposed fiscal 2019-2020 budget is $15.5 million to enhance Medicaid payments to nursing homes. 

U.S. Army

Florida lawmakers have approved new rules for plastic surgery centers, which have been loosely regulated despite the deaths of patients. 

Lit Cigarette

With almost no debate, the Florida Senate on Tuesday overwhelmingly approved a measure that would raise the minimum age to buy tobacco and vaping products from 18 to 21. 

Prescription drugs on a shelf.
Daylina Miller/WUSF

The House on Monday unanimously approved a bill that would give the attorney general access to information in a state prescription-drug database that could help in litigation against the pharmaceutical industry.

Army Lt. Col. Owen Johnson III, a plastic surgeon at William Beaumont Army Medical Center at Fort Bliss, Texas, is seated while he discusses options available for reconstructive surgery with a female patient.
Marcy Sanchez / U.S. Army photo

The Florida Senate on Thursday passed a sweeping health insurance bill that could protect hundreds of thousands of Floridians with pre-existing conditions while at the same time blunting the impact of the federal health care law. 

The state may have to pay millions of dollars more in treatment costs for inmates infected with hepatitis C.
Florida Department of Corrections

The state may have to pay millions of dollars more in treatment costs for inmates infected with hepatitis C, following a federal judge’s ruling Thursday that said prison officials have been “deliberately indifferent” in caring for thousands of inmates infected with the virus.

Courtroom bench
Wikimedia Commons

A federal appeals court this week upheld a judge’s decision that would end a long-running legal battle about whether Florida’s Medicaid program properly provided services to “medically fragile” children. 

Birth Control pills
Wikimedia Commons

A Senate health-care panel on Tuesday approved a bill that would lead to establishing a pilot program that would allow women in three Florida counties to access long-acting reversible contraceptives such as intrauterine devices. 

A Senate panel Tuesday approved a proposal that would set death benefits that would be paid if law-enforcement officers, firefighters, other first responders and military members are killed while on duty. 

Empty classroom with chalkboard on wall

The Florida Department of Education wants to give parents the option to pull their children from parts of courses they dislike that have to do with comprehensive health education. 

Row of lockers

In two of the highest-profile issues of the 2019 legislative session, the Senate on Wednesday is slated to take up proposals designed to bolster school safety and build or expand three toll roads. 

Collision between an orange sedan and a yellow hatchback
Creative Commons / PXhere

Changes could be coming to a House proposal to alter rules in the personal-injury protection insurance system. 

Patient in discussion with doctor at a desk.
Daylina Miller/WUSF

Florida lawmakers are considering requiring an estimated 500,000 Medicaid beneficiaries to work or show they are trying to get jobs to keep their health-care benefits, despite recent court rulings that have struck down similar requirements. 

Aaron Bean, R-Fernandina Beach
News Service of Florida

A Senate committee on Monday approved a bill that would restrict life-insurance companies from using genetic testing information in making decisions about selling policies. 

The Florida House is scheduled Wednesday to wade into the battle over the controversial insurance practice known as assignment of benefits. 

Pharmacy Technician amongst two shelves of prescription pills.
Daylina Miller/Health News Florida

A Senate health care panel ran out of time Thursday and was unable to consider a measure aimed at allowing imported prescription drugs from Canada.