Florida a destination for desperate patients buying unproven treatments
High-priced and largely unregulated clinics are drawing desperate people to Florida with promises of medical miracles. The clinics say they can harvest stem cells from a patient and reinject them to repair damage inflicted by a staggering range of diseases, from Alzheimer’s to multiple sclerosis to macular degeneration. But none of these procedures are clinically proven to be safe and effective, and none are federally approved. [Source: South Florida Sun-Sentinel]
Simply Healthcare Plans made too much money from Florida's health-care program that treats the poor, elderly and disabled and was required to return nearly $1.8 million to the state. It is the first time that a managed-care plan participating in Florida's statewide Medicaid managed-care program had to return money to the state. [Source: Health News Florida]
The opioid epidemic has grabbed the spotlight of late, with state and national leaders promising action. But local advocates, medical professionals and researchers who work every day with those affected by opioid addiction are hesitant to celebrate until they see meaningful action. [Source: Tampa Bay Times]
Health care regulators say it will cost Florida nursing homes more than $186 million to comply with a requirement to install generators and have 96 hours of fuel to be able to cool their facilities. [Source: WLRN]
The huge influx over a relatively short period of time could strain state and local government services ranging from housing and health care to employment and education. Agencies' resources will invariably be stretched, as they struggle to keep up with the pace of arrival. [Source: Governing]
› Clinical trial for Zika vaccine shows promise. But will it prevent infection? [Miami Herald]
An experimental Zika vaccine developed by scientists at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases is safe and induces an immune response in healthy adults, according to findings from an early stage clinical trial published Monday in The Lancet, a medical journal.
› MRMC might not need state OK to build hospital at TimberRidge [Ocala Star-Banner]
As Munroe Regional Medical Center waits to learn whether Florida healthcare regulators will approve its proposed 66-bed hospital at TimberRidge, some propose a route that they say sidesteps the need for state approval altogether.
› First responder PTSD bill gets hearing this week [WUSF]
A bill to expand workers’ compensation coverage to first responders with post-traumatic stress disorder is getting a hearing Tuesday in Tallahassee. See the first draft of the bill here. Florida first responders can get medical benefits for PTSD but aren’t eligible for other benefits like lost wages.
› Aetna-CVS deal could impact Tampa Bay area workers [Tampa Bay Business Journal]
CVS Health Corp. has agreed to buy Aetna Inc., the largest health insurance provider for Tampa Bay businesses. If approved by regulators, the $69 billion deal would create a wide-ranging health care giant with broad industry control.