September 25, 2021
DeSantis gives Florida an extra $12 million in fight against Alzheimer's, dementia

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DeSantis gives Florida an extra $12 million in fight against Alzheimer's, dementia

| 6/22/2021

DeSantis gives Florida an extra $12 million in fight against Alzheimer’s, dementia

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis announced a $12 million increase in funding for Alzheimer’s and dementia research and care. “We look forward to the medical breakthrough that will eventually bring a cure,” said DeSantis, speaking Monday at Windsor at San Pablo in Jacksonville, an assisted living and memory care facility, DeSantis said Florida is only state that has Alzheimer’s and dementia as its own priority within the state public health improvement plan. The announcement of additional funding follows Alzheimer’s Association’s longest day awareness fundraiser for the disease on June 21. [Source: South Florida Sun-Sentinel]

Coronavirus pandemic takes toll on Florida’s children, report finds

A new report from the Annie E. Casey Foundation is shedding light on the toll the coronavirus pandemic has taken on Florida’s children. The annual Kids Count report tracks child well-being by looking at factors like income levels, education and access to health care. It found that 18 percent of Florida’s children live in poverty and that the coronavirus pandemic could push that figure to 25 percent. The report also found that Florida continued to have the second highest number of children without health insurance in the country. [Source: Health News Florida]

State appeals court refuses to halt high-stakes hospital fight

In a decade-long legal fight that could involve hundreds of millions of dollars, a state appeals court this past week refused to halt a case that argues Sarasota County is required to reimburse private hospitals for providing care to indigent patients. A three-judge panel of the 2nd District Court of Appeal backed a circuit judge’s decision that denied the county’s request for a summary judgment that could have ended the case. The county argued that it should be shielded by sovereign immunity, which generally is designed to protect government agencies from lawsuits. [Source: News Service of Florida]

Florida medical marijuana patients anxious about the end of DeSantis coronavirus order

DeSantis’ emergency order is set to expire June 26, apparently taking with it a doctor’s ability to continue to recommend medical cannabis to patients virtually. That’s a concern for the neediest of the state’s cannabis patients, doctors say. DeSantis has made it clear he wants the state to return to pre-pandemic normalcy; he said May 3 that Florida is “no longer in a state of emergency.” Doctors in Florida cannot technically prescribe cannabis because the treatment remains federally illegal. But they can certify patients as legal users of medical marijuana. [Source: Tampa Bay Times]

Florida eliminates COVID-19 flexibilities for Medicaid

Gov. Ron DeSantis’ administration announced Friday that the state will next month step back from flexibilities that were offered to Medicaid providers and beneficiaries during the COVID-19 pandemic, including allowing people to receive behavioral health services without first obtaining prior authorization. The Agency for Health Care Administration issued eight Medicaid notices announcing that the policies designed to make it easier for patients to access health care and for providers to bill for the care were being rescinded. [Source: Florida Trend]


› ChenMed adding two locations in Jacksonville
ChenMed Dedicated Senior Medical Centers will add two more locations to the three it opened in Jacksonville in 2018. ChenMed expects to open the next two in late 2021 in Arlington and in Northwest Jacksonville. “We are happy with the hypergrowth that we have undergone in the past few years, even during the pandemic,” said Dr. Hermena Cerphy-Firmin, regional chief medical officer for Dedicated Senior Medical Centers in Jacksonville, Lakeland and Orlando.

› These five South Florida hospitals are being sold for $1.1 billion
A health group is buying five South Florida hospitals for $1.1 billion. Their new owner has strong regional ties. Dallas-based Steward Health is purchasing North Shore Medical Center, Florida Medical Center, Coral Gables Hospital, Hialeah Hospital and Palmetto General Hospital from Tenet Healthcare Corp., which is also based in Dallas

› Florida drops fight to regulate specialized health-care services
After facing nearly a dozen challenges from hospitals across the state, Gov. Ron DeSantis’ administration has withdrawn a series of proposed rules related to regulating highly specialized health-care services. The state Agency for Health Care Administration announced this week it planned to employ a rarely used option called “negotiated rulemaking” to try to reach a compromise on one of the withdrawn proposals, a regulation that would set licensure standards for neonatal intensive-care units.

› Medical bill review company hires top strategy officer
It was recently announced that George Furlong is the new chief strategic officer at accuro Solutions. He has previous experience in workers compensation and managed care to the new medical bill review and provider payment technology company. In his new role, Furlong works with accuro Solutions’ other leaders and clients to improve how medical payments are managed.

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