April 15, 2024
Mpox was a big problem in Florida. Now, not so much. What happened?

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Mpox was a big problem in Florida. Now, not so much. What happened?

| 8/29/2023

Mpox was a big problem in Florida. Now, not so much. What happened?

Health leaders are pleased with a dramatic drop in mpox cases in Orange County and throughout Florida compared to rates observed last year. It’s been one year since mpox cases peaked in both the state and in Orange County. Health experts expressed concerns about a widespread disease, but since the peak, mpox has barely been a blip for either the county or state. [Source: Health News Florida]

How long will Floridians have access to a legal abortion? The fight is on.

In a state where doctors perform more than 70,000 abortions a year, the next few months are pivotal to how much access Floridians will have to the procedure. Activity on multiple fronts is underway to make Floridians aware of what’s at stake and fight back against new abortion restrictions approved since the overturning of Roe v. Wade. The 15-week abortion ban that became law in Florida in 2022 could become a six-week limit within the next few months. [Source: South Florida Sun-Sentinel]

Some Florida doctors hope new golf cart law will curb a rise in youth injuries

Starting Oct. 1, teens in Florida won't be allowed to drive golf carts on public roads without a valid driver’s license or learner’s permit, according to a new state law passed during the legislative session this year. Doctors like Meghan Martin at Johns Hopkins All Children's Hospital in St. Petersburg applaud the move and hope it will improve golf cart safety. [Source: WUSF]

Lawsuit accuses Florida agencies of sending confusing Medicaid termination notices

Three Florida residents filed a federal lawsuit Tuesday, alleging that state agencies aren't adequately notifying low-income and disabled people that their public health insurance is ending. The class-action lawsuit was filed in Jacksonville federal court by the Florida Health Justice Project and the National Health Law Program on behalf of the three Floridians, according to court records. The defendants are the state Agency for Health Care Administration and Department of Children & Families. [Source: AP]

Researchers in South Florida search for a cure for diabetes

In a downtown Miami tower, 27 researchers peer into microscopes, take specimens from refrigerators, and drop liquid into test tubes in their daily search for a cure for diabetes. In the tower’s third floor imaging lab, Dr. Midhat Abdulreda studies whether insulin-producing islets can be implanted in the eye and thrive. Down the hall in the pre-clinical research lab, Dr. Norma Kenyon investigates how to best replace insulin-producing cells without the use of anti-rejection drugs that lower the whole immune system. And, in the fifth floor cell therapy lab, Dr. Giacomo Lanzoni researches how certain stem cells regulate the immune system. [Source: South Florida Sun-Sentinel]


› The University of Florida's College of Nursing sees record class numbers
The University of Florida’s College of Nursing has its largest incoming class ever this year, the school announced this week. There are 331 new students, increasing the total number of students to around 1,150 students. They are spread across the college’s three levels of degrees to also makes it the largest class in the college’s 70-year history.

› More Tampa Bay residents investing in mental health resources
A new report shows how mental health struggles are impacting Tampa Bay residents’ daily lives. Tampa Bay Thrives shared its findings from its second annual resident mental health report. The coalition conducted a survey and focus groups with residents. Tampa Bay Thrives’ President and CEO said they formed the coalition in 2019. It’s made up of hospital providers, law enforcement, first responders, schools and employers.

› Appeals court rejects lawsuits over UCF COVID shutdown
Adding to a series of similar rulings across the state, an appeals court Friday rejected two lawsuits alleging the University of Central Florida should be required to refund money to students because of a campus shutdown early in the COVID-19 pandemic. A panel of the 6th District Court of Appeal turned down arguments that UCF breached contracts by not providing on-campus services funded by student fees.

› 2 Florida veterans’ hospitals smacked with 1-star rating
The Bay Pines VA healthcare system is one of two Florida veterans’ facilities that received one out of five stars in an annual assessment by the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services. This was the first year the federal agency included VA hospitals in the survey that included all seven Florida VA medical centers. The West Palm Beach VA was also rated with a single star, and Tampa’s James Haley VAHCS got three stars.

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