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February 20, 2020
Florida hospitals preparing for potential cases of coronavirus

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Florida hospitals preparing for potential cases of coronavirus

| 1/28/2020

Florida hospitals preparing for potential cases of coronavirus

Florida hospitals are prepared if the coronavirus makes its way to the area, a risk that could increase as more travelers arrive for the Super Bowl in Miami. Medical experts in South Florida say with the number of international travelers to South Florida, it is just a matter of time until local hospitals see a case. “The department is coordinating closely with our local partners to investigate, confirm, contain and report any suspected cases, should they occur,” Florida health officials said. [Source: South Florida Sun-Sentinel]

See also:
» Health officials report no coronavirus cases in Fla. as Miami prepares for Super Bowl
» Central Florida airports, universities monitoring coronavirus outbreak
» Florida Department of Health monitoring China-borne coronavirus
» Coronavirus: Orlando doctors ask people to ‘stay vigilant'

Florida Senate eyes changes in employee health insurance

Changes could be in store for the state-employee health insurance program. Again. A Senate committee Monday introduced legislation that would make changes to prescription drug benefits, require the state to competitively bid the insurance program to managed-care plans in nine regions and strike a 2017 law that required four different benefit plans to be offered to employees. [Source: WJXT]

WellCare and Centene close on $17 billion merger

The multibillion-dollar merger between Tampa-based WellCare Health Plans and Centene Corp. closed on Thursday after meeting all regulatory requirements, the managed-care companies announced. The $17.3 billion merger, announced in March, combines two of the largest players in Florida’s Medicaid managed-care system. The St. Louis-based Centene’s purchase of WellCare was subject to approvals by numerous state and federal agencies. More from WUSF and the Tampa Bay Times.

Florida tops 100 hepatitis A cases in 2020

After a major outbreak in 2019, Florida has topped 100 cases of hepatitis A in the new year. As of Saturday, 101 cases had been reported in January, including 40 cases last week, according to the state Department of Health. The largest concentrations this month were in Duval and Polk counties, which had 12 and 10 cases, respectively, as of Saturday. [Source: Health News Florida]

FHA launches webinar series focused on worker resilience

The Florida Hospital Association announced Wednesday that it has launched a “Workforce Resilience Webinar Series” for hospital employees. The webinars are geared toward front-line caregivers, nurses, physicians, volunteers and affiliates. FHA said the curriculum is aimed at addressing burnout among health care providers, which is “alarmingly high.” [Source: Florida Politics]

ALSO AROUND FLORIDA:

› Florida Blue Earns top score in 2020 Corporate Equality Index
Florida Blue, the state's leading health insurer, announced that it received a score of 100 percent on the Human Rights Campaign Foundation's 2020 Corporate Equality Index (CEI), a national benchmarking survey and report measuring corporate policies and practices pertinent to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer employees. Florida Blue joins the ranks of more than 680 major U.S. businesses that earned top marks this year.

› More mental health funding coming to Bay County
Casey DeSantis spoke at the Bay County Emergency Operations Center, where she announced more money to help with mental health services after Hurricane Michael. She said $690,000 from the Federal Emergency Management Agency is going to Project H.O.P.E. The group is a nationwide disaster recovery group that is partnering with Life Management Center.

› CVS chooses Tampa Bay as first Florida market to unveil new health-focused designs
CVS has chosen nine locations in Tampa to unveil CVS Health’s new store design in Florida. The new HealthHUB store format features a broader range of health care services, more products and services and personalized care.

› Baptist Health to build $200 million hospital in Clay County, create 700 jobs
Baptist Health announced plans Jan. 23 to build a $200 million, 300,000-square-foot hospital at its Baptist Clay Medical Campus in Fleming Island. Groundbreaking for the 100-bed hospital will be in spring 2020, with an anticipated opening date in early 2022.

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