healthcare

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.

As many as half of the managed-care plans providing Medicaid services to Floridians were losing money midway through the year. But key players say they are not worried.

Ensuring that people with pre-existing health conditions can get and keep health insurance is the most popular part of the Affordable Care Act. It has also become a flashpoint in this fall's midterm campaigns across the country.

And not only is the ACA protection, which mostly applies to people who buy their own coverage, at risk. It's also possible that pre-existing condition protections that predate the federal health law could be in play.

Health Care Transparency Effort Lags

Sep 26, 2018
Miami Herald

With just months left in his term, one of Gov. Rick Scott’s key health-care initiatives remains in limbo.

Scott convinced legislators to set aside $3.5 million to create a new website and to create a claims database that would allow Floridians to shop around when it comes to health care. But with Scott ready to leave the governor’s office in January, the health-care price information still isn’t available to Florida consumers.

And it’s not clear when it will be.

With frustration growing among Americans who are being charged exorbitant prices for medical treatment, a bipartisan group of senators Tuesday unveiled a plan to protect patients from surprise bills and high charges from hospitals or doctors who are not in their insurance networks.

In the global health world, giving people access to health care — even if they're just basic services — has long been a top priority.

But what if that approach is wrong?

A new report published in The Lancet on Wednesday finds that when it comes to health, quality — not quantity — seems to be more important.

Flickr Creative Commons

It’s been over three years since the Florida Legislature debated -- and rejected -- a proposal to expand Medicaid. Expansion would make hundreds of thousands of uninsured Floridians eligible for the government healthcare insurance program for low-income people.

Thirty-three states, as well as the District of Columbia, have expanded the program. The most recent was Virginia where, after five years of heated debate, a slim Republican majority in the state Senate approved a budget that would expand Medicaid.

Will 2019 be the year Florida follows suit?

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern had a baby girl on Thursday, becoming the first sitting world leader to give birth in nearly three decades. The last head of government to give birth while in power was Benazir Bhutto, who had her second child in 1990, while prime minister of Pakistan.

Critics Take Aim At Medicaid Change

Jun 21, 2018

A move by Gov. Rick Scott’s administration to eliminate a long-standing policy that gives poor, disabled and elderly Floridians 90 days to qualify for the Medicaid program isn’t getting support from people who care for patients or from patients’ family members.

Children and adolescents are getting fewer prescription drugs than they did in years past, according to a study that looks at a cross-section of the American population.

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