May 23, 2019
Medicare opens enrollment with insurers focused on keeping patients out of the hospital

Photo: Tampa Bay Times files

Florida Trend Health Care

Medicare opens enrollment with insurers focused on keeping patients out of the hospital

| 10/16/2018

Medicare opens enrollment with insurers focused on keeping patients out of the hospital

The annual Medicare open enrollment period kicked off Monday, and the news is generally good for nearly 4.4 million Floridians who rely on the program. Premiums are expected to stay roughly the same in 2019, and many plans are offering expanded perks and benefits. [Source: Tampa Bay Times]

See also:
» Obamacare premiums dip for first time. Some call it a correction.
» 2019 Medicare Parts A & B -- 2019 premiums and deductibles

Health care is a key national issue but the real action may happen at state level

Health care has been a top issue in federal races this year as Republicans and Democrats fight over repealing or replacing Obamacare. But the real action this election might come at the state level. In addition to state ballot initiatives, the governor's races in several states – including Florida – could help determine if Medicaid coverage is expanded there. [Source: USA Today]

If your medical information becomes a moneymaker, could you get a cut?

Hospitals and health plans are increasingly using the huge amount of medical data they collect for research. It's a business worth billions of dollars, and sometimes those discoveries can be the foundation of new profit-making products and companies. When a company profits from your data, should you get a cut? Listen to the story below, or read more at NPR

Desperate need for blood donations after Hurricane Michael

The Red Cross highlighted a “critical” need for platelet and blood donations in the wake of Michael. Make an appointment on its website, through its blood donor app, or by calling 1-800-733-2767. OneBlood, a local nonprofit center in Florida and most of the Southeast, is encouraging eligible blood donors to donate blood here. [Source: PBS]

See also:
» HCA Healthcare donates $1 million to American Red Cross for Hurricane Michael relief
» Michael forces hospital, nursing home evacuations

DOJ indicts 4 Florida men in $1 billion telemedicine fraud conspiracy

Four Florida men were charged in a multistate telemedicine scheme that billed at least $931 million in fraudulent claims to private insurance companies, the Department of Justice said Monday. The four defendants, owners of seven compounding pharmacies in Florida and Texas, set up an elaborate telemedicine scheme that solicited insurance and prescription drug information from consumers across the country. Read the press release from the Justice Department and read more from WVLT.


› Miami medical company will move to Tampa after Dr. Kiran Patel’s $60 million investment
Cardiologist and entrepreneur Dr. Kiran Patel has invested $60 million in a medical device company whose headquarters will move from Miami to Tampa. The investment in Concept Medical Inc. will pay for clinical studies on cardiac devices.

› Florida firm to buy majority stake in Birmingham hospice firm
A Florida-based private equity fund has signed an agreement to acquire a majority stake in one of Birmingham's largest hospice companies. MBF Healthcare Partners, a Coral Gables-based private equity fund focused on middle market health care companies, is acquiring a majority stake in Affinity Hospice.

› Marianna Clinic will offer Veteran care for N. Florida
A temporary clinic will be opening in Marianna to offer medical care and mental health services to veterans. The clinic will open on Tuesday, October 16 at 4970 US 90, Marianna, Florida, 32446. It will be open from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.

› Hospital buying former Herald-Tribune building
The Sarasota Memorial Health Care System plans to spend $17.3 million to buy and renovate the former Sarasota Herald-Tribune building on Main Street and move more than 300 support services personnel to the three-story downtown site.

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Florida First Lady Casey DeSantis is taking on mental health as a major issue. She plans to coordinate state agencies to look at existing mental health and substance programs to see what works, and what doesn't to see how state money can be better spent. 

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