Florida Department of Health

C.W. GRIFFIN / MIAMI HERALD file

Before heading to the beach, you might want to check if it’s safe to swim at your chosen spot.

Elevated poop levels have led to Florida Department of Health swimming advisories for a total of eight beaches in Miami-Dade. Other beaches across the state — including six in Okaloosa County — were also put on warning Wednesday.

The advisories for Miami-Dade issued Wednesday were for: Surfside, 93rd Street; North Shore, 73rd Street; Collins Park, 21st Street; South Beach at Collins Avenue; South Beach at South Pointe Drive; and Virginia Beach.

Florida Surgeon General Declares Public Health Emergency Over Hep A

Aug 2, 2019
USDA.GOV

After more than 2,000 cases of reported hepatitis A cases in Florida this year, state Surgeon General Scott Rivkees declared a public health emergency Thursday.

“I am declaring this Public Health Emergency as a proactive step to appropriately alert the public to this serious illness and prevent further spread of Hepatitis A in our state,” Rivkees said in a prepared statement.

Rivkees encouraged people to be vaccinated against the virus, which is spread through oral injection or fecal matter.

MIAMI HERALD ARCHIVES

Reducing harmful nutrients in state waters, through moves such as more monitoring and staffing, is an expected short-term goal of a new task force set up by Gov. Ron DeSantis to look at toxic algae fouling Florida waterways.

But with a brief timeline for the five-member Blue Green Algae Task Force to reach its initial findings, don’t expect proposals for massive state rule changes related to farming practices or moving away from septic systems.

New Health Secretary To Keep Ties To UF

Jun 6, 2019

When physician Scott Rivkees takes over as secretary of the state Department of Health, he will continue to be employed by the University of Florida. 

IStock

Gov. Ron DeSantis announced last week that he has asked the Legislature to change Florida law to allow smokable medical marijuana. He also wants to reduce restrictions on who can grow and sell cannabis products. And the new Agriculture Commissioner has plans to create a Director of Cannabis position.

So far, it appears that newly sworn in Florida lawmakers are taking a sharp turn from former Gov. Rick Scott’s approach to try to limit access to medical cannabis in Florida.

Surgeon General Exit Means New State Health Leaders

Jan 2, 2019

While the incoming DeSantis administration has kept some of Gov. Rick Scott’s top officials, the state’s largest health-care agencies will see leadership changes.

drinking water
Getty images via Miami Herald / WLRN

This story has been updated for clarity, and with new information.

Broward County released its 2017 water quality report Monday.

The report, from the county's Water and Wastewater Services office, shows drinking water across Broward County had low, acceptable levels of all chemicals during 2017.

“Once again, our water met or exceeded all standards of the federal Safe Drinking Water Act,” Alan Garcia, the Director of Water and Wastewater Services, wrote in a statement Monday.

Hepatitis C Cases On The Rise In Florida

May 16, 2018

The Florida Department of Health says the rate for new infections of Hepatitis C in 2016 was the highest it’s ever been in Florida. 

Broward Drinking Water
Danny Rivero / WLRN

In a memo released to state environmental officials and county health department offices on Thursday, the Florida Department of Environmental Protection issued a clarification of when and how local and state officials should perform tests on local water systems.

Kate Stein / WLRN

In the hours before Hurricane Irma came barreling towards Florida, Gloria Guity and her adult children went to five different shelters before they arrived at Miami Edison Senior High School.

“Here is better than where we were,” Guity, 76, said sitting at a cafeteria table. “Here I told them to put me next to the bathroom so at least I can take them to the bathroom.”

Kyle Holsten / WLRN

When he had a landscaping business, Bob Hartmann grew 200,000 orchids and thousands of other plants on his three acres in Southwest Ranches, about 15 miles southwest of Fort Lauderdale.

 


Allison Light / Light

The case counts are low, but Zika's still a threat.

That was the message of a meeting of county and state mosquito control officials Monday in Doral.

A state investigation found a manager for the Florida Department of Health was selling jewelry out of her office and recruiting her employees to take part in the online pyramid scheme, according to a story in the Miami Herald.

CHT Medical is the fifth distributing organization in Florida to receive authorization to process and dispense medical marijuana.

CDC

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention strengthened its Zika guidance Wednesday, recommending that pregnant women consider postponing travel to all parts of Miami-Dade County and reiterating a recommendation that pregnant county residents take steps to prevent the virus's spread.

The updated guidance reflects concerns that the virus may be spreading in areas throughout the county, not just in the two "Zika zones" on Miami Beach and near Little River.

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