healthcare

Robert and Tiffany Cano of San Tan Valley, Ariz., have a new marriage, a new house and a 10-month-old son, Brody, who is delighted by his ability to blow raspberries.

They also have a stack of medical bills that threatens to undermine it all.

In the months since their sturdy, brown-eyed boy was born, the Canos have acquired nearly $12,000 in medical debt — so much that they need a spreadsheet to track what they owe to hospitals and doctors.

The number of Floridians who enrolled in the Affordable Care Act this year increased by more than 55,000 compared to last year.

DeSantis Panel Says Health Innovation Needed

Dec 20, 2018

Supporters of Gov.-elect Ron DeSantis want Florida to take a more active role in finding innovative ways to overhaul how health care is delivered in the state.

If last Friday's district court ruling that the Affordable Care Act is unconstitutional were to be upheld, far more than the law's most high-profile provisions would be at stake.

In fact, canceling the law in full — as Judge Reed O'Connor in Fort Worth, Texas, ordered in his 55-page decision — could thrust the entire health care system into chaos.

Caitie Switalski / WLRN

Videos and photos of police officers responding to Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School on Feb. 14 show them saving at least two victims by applying tourniquets to gunshot wounds on their legs.

Now, Julie Osheroff is learning how to do that. And she's not a cop — she's a teacher.

Osheroff recently trained with about 85 of her colleagues in how to be a first responder.

everydayplus / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Florida's largest health insurer has seen a 45 percent drop in opioid prescriptions since it stopped paying for OxyContin.

It has been almost a year since Florida Blue announced that it would no longer provide prescription payments for the popular painkiller and would require advanced permission for any opioid prescription lasting longer than seven days.

It replaced OxyContnin in its drug plans with a different opioid, Xtampza. That drug is designed to be more difficult to crush, making it tougher to snort or inject.

The Affordable Care Act faces a new legal challenge after a federal judge in Texas ruled the law unconstitutional on Friday. The decision risks throwing the nation's health care system into turmoil should it be upheld on appeal. But little will be different in the meantime.

"Nothing changes for now," says Julie Rovner, chief Washington correspondent of Kaiser Health News.

Proposal Targets Cost Of Emergency Transportation For Patients

Dec 14, 2018

Insured patients in Florida shouldn’t have to pay large bills if they require emergency medical transportation services. They also should have access to copies of their medical records free of charge, a state advisory board agreed Thursday.

Like millions of Americans in this final week of open enrollment for the Affordable Care Act marketplaces, Diane McCabe is shopping for health insurance.

"At my age, I can't go without it, even though I'm healthy now," says McCabe. She's 62 and a self-employed real estate agent in Luzerne County, Pa. "But the process is frustrating, and the expense significant."

Editor's note: This story was updated with enrollment figures made available on Dec. 19.

About 8.5 million people enrolled in health plans for 2019 through the federal HealthCare.gov website by the Dec. 15 deadline.

That's about 367,000 fewer people than signed up during the 6 week open enrollment season last year, a decline of about 4 percent, according to new numbers from the Department of Health and Human Services.

Higher Tax Credits Could Eliminate Premiums On Some ACA Plans

Dec 13, 2018

Signups for health insurance through the federal marketplaces are down as the open enrollment period comes to an end. But more than half a million Floridians could be eligible for tax credits that would cover the cost of one of the insurance plans.

Marjie Lambert / Miami Herald

A food service worker at Morimoto Asia in Disney Springs has tested positive for Hepatitis A.

The Florida Department of Health says anyone who dined at the restaurant between Nov. 6-16 might have been exposed to the virus.

The DOH recommends people who ate or drank anything at the restaurant on those dates get vaccinated and remain alert to symptoms like dark urine, abdominal discomfort, fever or jaundice that require immediate medical attention.

Arguments Set In Marijuana Smoking Case

Nov 23, 2018

An appeals court will hear arguments Jan. 8 in a legal battle about whether a ban on smoking medical marijuana violates a 2016 constitutional amendment.

Joey Flechas / Miami Herald

Imagine being identified by the wrong gender in the lobby of your own doctor’s office, or having trouble finding a job, or being rejected by your own family, because you are a transgender person.

These situations complicate an already difficult daily experience for trans people, and they increase the risk of HIV among an already-vulnerable population in South Florida, according to a new study by Human Rights Watch.

 

Catherine Guthrie already knew a lot about breast cancer when she found a lump on her left breast at age 38.

A women's health journalist, Guthrie had written about breast cancer patients' experiences and had followed the latest treatment innovations. But all of that research could not have prepared her for living through breast cancer — and the choices she would have to make about her body.

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