hca officials at a conference table
Blake Farmer / WPLN

As Hurricane Dorian threatened the Florida coast, top officials at HCA spent Labor Day weekend wringing their hands, pulling all-nighters in a Nashville command center.

As Hurricane Dorian threatened the Florida coast, top officials at HCA spent Labor Day weekend wringing their hands, pulling all-nighters in a Nashville command center.

It almost didn't matter where the storm hits; HCA Healthcare's hospitals were going to be affected. With dozens of hospitals on Florida’s east and west coasts, the for-profit hospital chain is exposed every time a hurricane threatens the Sunshine State.

Registered nurses at 15 HCA-affiliated hospitals in five states, including Florida, have voted to authorize nurse negotiators to call a strike if the issues RNs have been raising in ongoing contract negotiations remain unresolved, the National Nurses Organizing Committee announced.

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Part of a new Florida law touted as a way to end years of disputes over trauma centers is being challenged by a Miami-based hospital.

US Army Medical Command

Gov. Rick Scott signed 38 bills into law on Wednesday, including a measure that supporters hope will end years of battling in the hospital industry about the approval of trauma centers.

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A bill approved by the Florida Legislature would end HCA’s bid to open a trauma center at Northside Hospital in St. Petersburg.

Employees from Capital Regional Medical Center and parent company HCA’s North Florida office were doubling as holiday elves on Wednesday, Dec. 6. They were wrapping presents for dozens of local families.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

The University of South Florida has formed a partnership with a network of hospitals to train more doctors in the Tampa Bay area.

HCA Adding Hospital In Sebring

Jul 25, 2017
Highlands Regional Medical Center

HCA Healthcare, a major player in Florida's hospital industry, is expected later this year to add Highlands Regional Medical Center in Sebring.

UCF Trustees Approve Teaching Hospital Proposal

Oct 25, 2016

The University of Central Florida Board of Trustees on Monday approved a proposal related to a joint venture with the HCA health-care company to add a teaching hospital adjacent to the university's College of Medicine.

UCF Trustees Set To Act On Hospital Plan

Oct 23, 2016

The University of Central Florida Board of Trustees on Monday could continue moving forward with a plan aimed at building a hospital adjacent to the university's College of Medicine.


For-profit hospital operator HCA has been picked to build a teaching hospital at the University of Central Florida.


Osceola County is getting its first pediatric intensive care unit beds this week. Osceola Regional is opening a six-bed ICU beds for children and eight private pediatric beds, attached to a new pediatric emergency room.

Hospital Chain Ends Long-Running Tax Dispute With Florida

Apr 13, 2016

A major hospital chain is settling a long-running tax dispute with the state of Florida.

Records show HCA Holdings, the parent company of the Nashville-based HCA, signed an agreement with Florida officials in late March to drop three lawsuits. The lawsuits relate to disputes over how much in corporate income taxes HCA paid to the state.


Nemours Children’s Hospital is partnering with a nearby competitor.

Osceola Regional Medical Center will have Nemours doctors and specialists provide care on site, under a deal announced Monday. The agreement will expand in summer, when Nemours doctors will staff a new six-bed pediatric ICU unit at Osceola Regional Medical Center.

House Eyes Health Care Deregulation Ideas

Nov 20, 2015
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Touting the possibility of more choices for patients, a House committee Thursday began a renewed effort to revamp regulations in the health-care industry.


The University of Central Florida announced a five-year deal with the country’s largest for-profit hospital chain to train doctors after graduation, with the hope that those slots will mean as many as 550 doctors will stick around Florida to practice medicine.

Humana has sent letters to its Florida customers alerting them that as of July 10, HCA hospitals will no longer be part of the insurer’s network.  

When it comes to insurance disputes, this is the heavyweight division. Humana, based in Louisville, has close to 1 million Medicare patients in Florida plus hundreds of thousands of business and individual customers who sign up through insurance agents or the federal Marketplace for subsidized plans under the Affordable Care Act.

Humana has pulled out of a major health care conference and said it will not comment on rumors of a merger, actions that will likely fuel Wall Street speculation that the insurer is part of a developing deal.

Shares of the Medicare Advantage coverage provider, which hit an all-time high late last month, rose Monday while broader indexes slipped.

Trauma Care Fight Flares In South FL

Jun 4, 2015

Florida's trauma care battles are back.

Two major health care systems in South Florida have launched legal challenges against a state Department of Health decision that allowed Aventura Hospital and Medical Center to open a trauma center this spring. Meanwhile, another Miami-Dade County hospital, Jackson South Community Hospital, is fighting a state denial of its plan for a trauma center.

Citrus Memorial Health System

Citrus Memorial Health System, a not-for-profit community hospital, is now part of HCA West Florida. Citrus Memorial has a 50-year lease with HCA, which went into effect Nov. 1, according to a news release.

A potentially far-reaching lawsuit has been filed against South Florida’s JFK Regional Medical Center and its owner, HCA Holdings, The Tampa Tribune reports.

The two biggest health initiatives of the Florida House for 2014-15 both died at the hands of the Senate during the final 36 hours of this year's legislative session, which ended around 10:30 Friday night.

They were:

--Allowing nurse practitioners who have sufficient training to practice independently of physician supervision;

--Setting up a structure under the law for the growth of distance health care through  telemedicine or telehealth, terms used at various times during the session.

Florida’s Supreme Court won’t step into the ongoing battle between urban hospital trauma centers and newer programs operated by HCA Healthcare.

The court on Monday told HCA and the Florida Department of Health it won’t review a 1st District Court of Appeal decision that supports Tampa- and Jacksonville-area trauma centers, the News Service of Florida reports.

Former Republican Charlie Crist, now gunning for his old gubernatorial job as a Democrat, is reaffirming his support for the Affordable Care Act, the Naples Daily News reports. At a campaign stop Monday in Naples, Crist cited a PolitiFact ruling of “mostly false” on Gov.

HCA Healthcare’s argument that their trauma centers save the lives of more Floridians is based on internal research that’s yet to be released to the public, the Tampa Bay Times reports.


If it has seemed a mystery why so many hospitals want to have trauma centers, the answer has now been supplied in an eye-opening series by the Tampa Bay Times (paywall alert): They can charge a "trauma response fee," a hidden road to riches. That arbitrary fee is in addition to the already whopping bill.

A barrage of television ads blasting UF Health and Tampa-area hospitals is being financed by a senior advocacy group aligned with conservative causes. The ads appear to support the position of Hospital Corporation of America in a lawsuit brought by the non-profits.

Jacksonville-based Florida Blue plans to eliminate employer-based insurance plans for 500 early retirees, saying they now can buy private Florida Blue policies or shop on the health insurance exchange.  The move will affect former workers not yet 65, according to the Florida Times-Union.

Virtual visits will be the norm at the state’s newest VA Medical Center. Leaders from the Veterans Health Administration National Simulation Center in Medical City are about to accept bids for the $20.3 million center, according the Orlando Business Journal. The center is being designed to serve veterans via online portals.