health care

Health Care
9:36 pm
Tue July 22, 2014

Dueling Appeals Court Decisions Leave Obamacare Subsidies In Limbo

Credit Amenic181 / freedigitalphotos.net

Some Obamacare insurance subsidies were struck down by one court but upheld by another during a tumultuous day for the Affordable Care Act. One of the rulings is a direct threat to the tax credits that have recently helped thousands of Floridians buy health insurance.

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Health Care
3:22 pm
Wed July 16, 2014

Florida First In Medicaid Coverage For Mentally Ill

Florida is rolling out new Medicaid plans specifically for people with severe mental health diagnoses.
Credit Creative Commons of Charles Bell's Anatomy of the Brain, c. 1802 / Flickr user Shaheen Lakhan

  This month, Florida became the first state to offer a Medicaid plan dedicated to people who are diagnosed with severe mental health disorders.

It’s part of a larger move by the state’s Medicaid officials to move coverage towards a managed care system. It means one organization takes care of and coordinates all of a person’s health care needs: no more separate dental, vision, and internal medicine plans.

Mental health issues are almost twice as prevalent among Medicaid recipients than in the general population.

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Health
5:10 pm
Mon July 14, 2014

Hospitals Fix Early-Birth Problem

Originally published on Wed July 2, 2014 11:18 am

 Close to 50 Florida hospitals have successfully reined in a practice that can cause big problems: Deliberately delivering an infant before the completion of the 39th week of pregnancy.

The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists and the March of Dimes are giving a banner of recognition that says "Healthy Babies Are Worth the Wait" to each hospital that meet the criteria, according to a news release from March of Dimes. 

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News
1:36 pm
Fri July 11, 2014

Why Miami's Health Rights Clinic Offers Veterans Free Legal Services

Credit Miami Herald

The Health Rights Clinic in the University of Miami’s School of Law offers free legal services to veterans. They help those who've been denied benefits they may be entitled to, like Social Security.

Ryan Foley, a pro bono attorney for the clinic, says the most common reason veterans are denied is that they have not been able to provide enough evidence to support their claims.

“That is why lawyers are so important to getting veterans the benefits they deserve,” says Foley.

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Medicare Investigation
9:32 pm
Mon May 19, 2014

Florida's Unusual Medicare Charges, And Why They Matter To Patients

ProPublica found unusual Medicare billing patterns in Florida and elsewhere.
Credit cooldesign / freedigitalphotos.net

A group of Florida doctors has been charging Medicare at a surprisingly high rate.

A ProPublica investigation analyzed a recently released Medicare database and found unusual billing patterns in Florida and elsewhere. ProPublica used that same data to create an online tool that lets patients see how individual doctors compare to their peers when it comes to procedures and billing patterns.

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ProPublica Investigation
12:15 pm
Thu May 15, 2014

Florida Docs Charge Medicare Top Rate For Office Visits

An analysis of Medicare billing rates show some doctors charge an unusually high amount for office visits.
Credit Vichaya Kiatying-Angsulee / freedigitalphotos.net

Office visits are the bread and butter of many physicians’ practices. Medicare pays for more than 200 million of them a year, often to deal with routine problems like colds or high blood pressure. Most require relatively modest amounts of a doctor’s time or medical know-how.

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Addiction Recovery
6:27 pm
Tue April 1, 2014

Legislature Wants To Tighten Scrutiny Over South Florida's Multitude Of 'Sober Houses'

Credit freedigitalphotos.net

Rules to govern the so-called "sober houses" that proliferate in Palm Beach and Broward counties have survived one gauntlet of committees in the Legislature and they're ready for a full House vote.

The bill aims to protect the sober houses' complaining neighbors as well as the recovering addicts themselves. Listen to the full story below.

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Health Care
3:15 pm
Tue April 1, 2014

Miami Nurses In Tallahassee Find Legislation Has No Desire To Extend Medicaid

Credit freedigitalphotos.net

The campaign to expand Medicaid for Florida's uninsured poor continued in Tallahassee last week with a mass lobby conducted by doctors and nurses from Miami's Jackson Hospital. They went from office to office in the Capitol seeking legislative support, but got basically nowhere.

Hear the full story:

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Affordable Care Act
11:48 am
Wed March 26, 2014

Obamacare Deadline Is Today. Here's What You Need To Know

The deadline to sign up for Obamacare is March 31.
Credit Amenic181 / freedigitalphotos.net

Despite opposition from Republicans and a public that remains skeptical, the Affordable Care Act is still the law and the deadline to sign up for insurance without paying a penalty is just days away. The law has already altered the health care industry, established many consumer benefits and has sweeping ramifications for state officials, employers, hospitals and doctors.

Here's a primer on how the law might affect you.

I am uninsured. Under the law, do I have to buy it and what happens if I don’t?

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News
6:38 pm
Mon March 24, 2014

Why Florida's Immigrant Children Must Wait Five Years For Health Care

Severiana Novas-Francois and two of her daughters. Under Florida law, Novas-Francois has to wait until her children have lived here for five years to qualify for the subsidized health insurance known as Florida Kidcare.
Credit Courtesy of Severiana Novas-Francois

In Florida, children who were born outside the United States -- and live here lawfully -- have to wait five years to qualify for the subsidized health care program known as Florida KidCare.

Sen. Rene Garcia, R-Hialeah, and Rep. Jose Felix Diaz, R-Miami, are sponsoring legislation to drop the five-year waiting period.

The law made its third trip to the legislature this year, and will get its first hearing in the Senate committee Tuesday.

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'United For Care'
3:32 pm
Thu March 6, 2014

Why An Orlando Attorney Supports Medical Marijuana

Credit NPR/ Flickr

On Nov. 4, state voters will decide whether to make medical marijuana legal.

The proposed constitutional amendment got enough petition signatures to make it onto the ballot and it also survived a Florida Supreme Court challenge by state Attorney General Pam Bondi.

John Morgan is an Orlando-based personal injury attorney who spearheaded the drive under the "United For Care" campaign.

Here he talks about what led him to the decision to start the effort to legalize medical marijuana.

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Health Care
5:01 am
Thu March 6, 2014

Florida's Insurers Push To Sell Health Coverage To Latinos

Yolanda Madrid of Miami (left) talks with navigator Daniela Campos while signing up for health insurance under the Affordable Care Act in January.
Lynne Sladky AP

Originally published on Fri March 7, 2014 7:59 am

For all of California's troubles advertising health care to Latinos, that state has embraced the Affordable Care Act and is spending millions of dollars to get people to sign up. Florida is a different story.

Florida has a high rate of uninsured Latinos - almost 10 percent of all the country's uninsured Hispanics who are eligible for health insurance under the Affordable Care Act live in the state.

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News
2:01 pm
Fri December 6, 2013

How To Improve Healthcare For Blacks In South Florida

Medical professionals selected by Legacy Magazine discuss the state of black healthcare in South Florida. Author and speaker Casandra Roache (far left) moderated the panel discussion.
Credit Rachel Morello / WLRN

A panel of the area’s top medical professionals gathered Tuesday to discuss the state of black healthcare in South Florida. The discussion, hosted by Legacy Magazine, addressed medical issues affecting African-Americans, who make up nearly a quarter of the South Florida population.

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Jackson Health System
5:55 pm
Fri November 1, 2013

County Hospital Seeks Taxpayer Help To Attract Obamacare Customers

Now that formerly uninsured South Floridians are shopping for coverage on Healthcare.gov, Jackson wants to lure them with upgrades.

Jackson Health System wants to go after formerly uninsured individuals now receiving coverage under the Affordable Care Act. Because insured customers have increasingly been choosing hospitals with snazzier facilities, Jackson is asking Miami-Dade County voters to raise their own property taxes to cover a top-to-bottom remake of the hospital system.

If the referendum passes on Tuesday, JHS will issue bonds to raise $830 million for the renovations. The bond debt would add about $50 to the average county taxpayer's yearly tax bill.

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Public Services
7:19 am
Tue October 29, 2013

How Miami-Dade County Helps Seniors Figure Out Health Care

Miami-Dade Parks and Recreation will host health fairs for seniors all over the county.
Credit Wilson Sayre

The Miami-Dade County Parks and Recreation Department is trying to do its part to help seniors navigate the health insurance maze.

Yesterday, the department kicked off a series of health fairs to be held all over the county as part of their Active Adults program.

Health service providers gave short presentations about how they can help to navigate the complicated health system -- tips about how to get the most out of coverage and ways to avoid health care fraud.

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