November 29, 2023
Florida's required school immunizations fell to 10-year low

Florida Trend Health Care

Florida's required school immunizations fell to 10-year low

| 12/6/2022

Florida’s required school immunizations fell to 10-year low

Last school year marked a more than 10-year low for Florida’s kindergarten and seventh-grade students completing all doses of required immunizations, according to a recent report from the state Department of Health. About 91.7% of kindergarten students in public and private schools statewide completed the immunizations required to enter school during the 2021-2022 year, the September report showed. That rate of completion is the lowest since the 2010-2011 school year, when 91.3% of students completed all doses of the required vaccines. [Source: News Service of Florida]

Column: Florida HIV cases are climbing. Why don’t leaders care?

For many young Floridians, HIV/AIDs is something they barely think about. But the insidious virus hasn’t forgotten about Florida. The Sunshine State leads the nation in new infections, with 120,000 active cases and estimates that as many as 17,700 are living with HIV and don’t know it. This is tragic. It’s indefensible. And it’s so preventable. [Source: Orlando Sentinel]

Florida Trend Exclusive
University of Miami partners with Chile to establish first official nurse practitioner program

Nurse practitioner was a foreign role in Chile — until a plea for help from the Chilean government. A rising number of cancer cases in that country sparked a collaboration between the University of Miami School of Nursing and Health Sciences and the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile. Chile’s first official nurse practitioner program is a result of years of partnership with the UM nursing school and is designated as a nursing collaborating center by the Pan American Health Organization/World Health Organization. [Source: Florida Trend]

Nurseries are disappearing in American hospitals. Is this a good thing?

HCA Florida Osceola Hospital’s decision to eliminate its nursery — which prompted dozens of nurses, who argue the change will create unsafe conditions for newborns, to stage a protest this week — is part of a growing trend around the country. In recent decades, it’s become standard to leave healthy newborns in rooms with their mothers as much as possible — a practice called rooming-in. It’s also referred to as the mother-baby model because one nurse typically cares for both of them. HCA Osceola has embraced this model. [Source: Orlando Sentinel]

Florida leaders misrepresented research before ban on gender-affirming care

Behind Florida's decision to block clinical services for transgender adolescents is a talking point — repeated by the state's governor and top medical authorities — that most cases of gender incongruence fade over time. The Florida Board of Medicine voted Nov. 4 to approve a rule that barred physicians from performing surgical procedures on minors to alter "primary or secondary sexual characteristics" and from prescribing them medication to suppress puberty and hormones. The rule included an exception for patients who were already receiving those treatments. [Source: Sarasota Herald-Tribune]


› Treatment program for first responders offers hope for group at high-risk for cancer
First responders, particularly firefighters, are at a higher risk of getting cancer because of what they can be exposed to while doing their jobs. Baptist MD Anderson Cancer Center has a special program that helps them navigate treatment. So far, 21 first responders have gone through the program since it started less than two years ago. Brooke Westerhoff has a lot of titles to list. She is a firefighter and EMT with Putnam County Fire Rescue, and a newlywed. Westerhoff is also a cancer survivor. “It is a second chance at life because I look at everything differently now,” Westerhoff said.

› Hillsborough has a free health care plan for residents who can't get Medicaid. It needs more members
As one of 11 states in the U.S. that has not chosen to expand Medicaid, Florida restricts its program to children, pregnant people, caretakers of minors and some seniors and residents with disabilities. This leaves thousands of residents who live on low incomes but don't meet the criteria struggling to access health care. The Hillsborough program offers help to county residents who can’t qualify for Medicaid or access other health care benefits.

› Sarasota center for trauma recovery debuts to big interest
For many ventures, breaking ground for a new project during the pandemic wasn’t ideal timing. But for Sarasota-based nonprofit Resilient Retreat, which offers programs and services for people impacted by trauma and abuse, the timing proved a bit fortuitous. “I know it seemed like a curse, opening during the pandemic,” says Lisa Intagliata, executive director of Resilient Retreat. “But in a way I think it was a blessing, because people understand trauma now very personally.”

› The Villages Health marks its 10th year
It’s now been 10 years since The Villages Health began seeing patients. What started in Colony now boasts seven primary, and two specialty, care centers. Its 667 staff serves more than 60,000 patients, many of whom are new to Florida. “These folks that are moving here, they need to find a new primary care physician, they need to find new specialists, and so that’s to me driving a lot of the growth of The Villages Health,” said Bob Trinh, TVH chief executive officer.

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Nurse practitioners: Crucial providers on the frontlines
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