Archive for the ‘Health News’ Category
Zika is in the Flaviviridae family and belongs to the genus Flavivirus. Cases have now been reported in South Florida and also on the Gulf coast of Florida. Protect yourself, family, and friends with information, precautions, and updates.
The CDC has helpful resources here:
The Merck Professional Manual also has comprehensive information:
The State of Florida’s website also has info at http://www.floridahealth.gov/diseases-and-conditions/zika-virus/index.html
The Miami Herald is also tracking Zika here in Florida:
Coming to one of the 50 states you reside in – affordable health care insurance? Retail medical services?
Here’s wishing everyone a safe, healthy new year in 2013. Are you any better informed on what the new health law/Affordable Health Care Act will bring? Perhaps like myself, you may have questions like these:
*Where is there affordable health insurance as a part-time/un(der) employed worker, who does not expect to be eligible to receive it via his/her employer or expect to continue to coverage via their ex-employer?
Depending on your individual situation/income, you may wish to seek…
a) Medicaid for yourself and/or family members
(See Fla Dept. of Health Care or Fla. Department of Children/Families
b) Medicare (if 65 yrs and over)
b)Palm Beach Health Care District Insurance
(See http://www.pbchd.com/centers/healthcenters.html, Vitahealth.org)
c) Other private medical insurance
*What will be some likely pros, cons, or costs of having to purchase insurance versus paying a tax penalty beginning in 2014?
Individuals need to weigh or compare how much they’ll be likely to spend in health insurance coverage against what they may have to pay in federal income tax.
As I understand it, beginning in the federal tax year 2014 an uninsured person will have to pay the greater of a penalty/flat rate per person or a percentage of one’s taxable income. That rate will be phased in/stepped up and eventually capped each year to the national average cost for purchasing a health insurance plan. (By 2016 the flat rate will be the greater of $695 for each adult person without medical insurance. Thereafter, the penalty will be indexed/linked to the rate of inflation. There will also be various exemptions from having to pay the penalty, however.)
See Devin Dwyer’s “Health Care Law Mandate ‘Tax’: How Much Is It?” at ABC News, June 28, 2012.
*How will uninsured Floridians be able to purchase health insurance if the state of Florida will not set up a health exchange for them, as required by the Act?
This is one question there may be no answer for at this time.
I have found little mention on the Federal government setting up a Florida health exchange in the absence of the state of Florida doing so. More information on the creation of the health exchange will likely be available in the spring.
Meanwhile, I’ve been coming across other interesting news stories, such as retail pharmacy chain CVS and retail giant Walmart expanding to offer health clinics in their stores:
Bruce Japsen, New York Times, “More Health Clinics Pop Up Inside Retailers,” January 9, 2012.
You may also wish check the following websites periodically:
The Advisory Board’s ACA’s Medicaid expansion website at http://www.advisory.com/Daily-Briefing/2012/11/09/MedicaidMap
Are you wondering where Florida stands on expansion of Medicaid compared to other states? The Advisory Board has a current Medicaid Expansion map. The Advisory Board is “a global research, technology, and consulting firm partnering with 150,000 leaders in 3,700+ organizations across health care and higher education.”
AHCA/Florida Agency for Health Care Administration at http://www.fdhc.state.fl.us/#aa
This agency administers the State of Florida’s Medicaid program for 3 million Floridians and 41 health clinics. It also offers current news and alerts on health care provisions and changes. On the site you can search for a facility near you.
HealthCare.gov at http://www.healthcare.gov/index.html
This is the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ website for the new Patient and Affordable Health Care Act. On the site, you can search for private medical insurance in your state, find out basic information on insurers and understanding insurance coverage, learn more about how the new health care law will impact you, comparing providers (in terms of coverage, physicians, home health agencies and nursing homes, as well as dialysis facilities. There is also a news section on prevention and wellness.
Internal Revenue Service Information on Affordable Care Act Tax Provisions at http://www.irs.gov/uac/Affordable-Care-Act-Tax-Provisions
On this portion of the IRS website, there is a list of proposed/issued Affordable Care Act provisions that will impact taxpayers. This page is continuously updated. One particular provision individual uninsured adult Americans should watch is the Health Insurance Premium Tax Credit.
The Congressional Budget Office’s information on Payments of Penalties for Being Uninsured Under the Affordable Care Act at http://cbo.gov/publication/43628
The CBO and the Joint Committee on Taxation estimate about 30 million non-senior Americans will be uninsured in 2016, but many of them will not likely be affected by the tax penalty. For more on this, please see the CBO report and also the short April 22, 2010 statement below at
As an middle aged, uninsured woman, I’m always researching affordable health care resources available to me here locally.
I found a helpful article, “Help for the Uninsured,” by Phil Galewitz and Christine Stapleton, in the Palm Beach Post on March 9, 2009. [March 29, 2013: Unfortunately, the link directly to that page is now gone. Please see the information below, sourced from that article]:
*Health Care District (HCD) of Palm Beach County
Apply for low-cost or free health coverage if you are a county resident.
There is a local HCD of PB County Lantana-Lake Worth Center located here in Lantana:
1250 Southwinds Drive
Lantana, FL 33462
Hours: 7:30 AM to 5:00 PM Monday through Friday
2nd Saturday of each month
9:00 AM – 1:00 PM
If going west on Lantana Road, turn right on Andrew Redding Road, at the Florida Highway Patrol Office/Dept. of Motor Vehicle Registrations.
If going east, turn left onto Andrew Redding Road.
*Palm Beach County Medical Society’s Project Access
A program of volunteer doctors who treat the uninsured.
*Florida Department of children and Families’ ACCESS Florida
Apply for Medicaid.
Galewitz and Stapleton also list a number of clinics in our area, and programs with sliding/varying fees:
Other Free Clinics
A free health clinic based in West Boynton Beach.
*Community Health Center
A free health clinic on 2823 N. Australian Ave in West Palm Beach.
Free health clinic in Jupiter at 412 Center Street, located immediately east of Beacon Baptist Church.
Sliding Fee Scale
*Palm Beach County Health Department
Provides primary and dental care on a sliding fee scale. Family planning and prenatal care also available, as are testing and treatment of communicable diseases such as tuberculosis, sexually transmitted diseases, HIV/AIDs, hepatitis C. Clinics are located at various locations within Palm Beach County, including Belle Glade, Delray Beach, Jupiter, Lantana/Lake Worth, Pahokee, Riviera Beach and West Palm Beach.
*Florida Community Health Centers
Provides primary care on a sliding fee scale. Centers are located throughout Palm Beach County and the Treasure Coast, including Ft. Pierce, Pahokee, Port St. Lucie.
In Palm Beach County, there is a center located at
4450 South Tiffany Drive
West Palm Beach, Florida 33407
Phone: (561) 844-9443
*FAU Wellness Centers
Provide primary care services on a sliding fee scale. Locations in Delray Beach and West Palm Beach below….
Delray Beach Full Service Center
(Satellite at Carver Estates)
S.W. 14 th Avenue
Delray Beach, FL 33444
Phone: (561) 243-1573
Fax: (561) 279-1765
West Gate Community Wellness Center
1650 Osceola Drive
West Palm Beach, FL 33409
Phone: (561) 616-4101
Fax: (561) 616-4179
Director: Susan Beidler, PhD, Mbe, ARNP, BC
Specific Types of Health Care
*Palm Beach State College Dental Health Services
4200 Congress Ave, Lake Worth 33461
Ph: (561) 868-3757
“…a teaching facility in which students enrolled in the Dental Hygiene program provide preventive dental care to the community.”
PBSC also has other helpful community dental services listed on its site at
*H.O.P.E. Project Mobile Mammography Van
To schedule a free mammogram, call (561) 659-4278
Hanley offers free substance abuse screening for adults and adolescents and a free program for children of addicts and alcoholics. (561) 841-1000 or 866-4HANLEY.
Call(561) 841-1000 or 866-4HANLEY.
Pparx.com, a partnership between doctors, pharmaceutical companies and other health care providers, patient advocacy organizations and community groups to help qualifying patients who lack prescription coverage get the medicines they need through the public or private program that’s right for them. Many will get them free or nearly free. 1-888-4PPA-NOW (1-888-477-2669).
There are also low cost/free health insurance programs listed in the article. I’ll provide more information on some of these in another upcoming posting.
Take a look also at Lantana Public Library’s Help in Hard Times web page!
Breast Cancer Awareness month is October. Palm Beach County has a number of events this month and beyond to help fundraise, educate, and inform women about procedures, costs, and locations.
Had you heard of a program for uninsured and lower income women to obtain free breast/mammogram screenings?
If you are in need of a screening, are uninsured or underinsured, and can drive to Boca Raton, please call the following number (at Boca Raton Regional Hospital) for more information on scheduling an appointment and obtaining a Komen Grant: ( 561)955-4294
My screening/mammogram is being made available through the Kathryn Krickstein Pressel MammoVan, which operates with Boca Raton Regional Hospital.
Boca Raton Regional Hospital is a current recipient of grants awarded to non-profit health care agencies and service providers in our area via the County’s own chapter of the Susan G. Komen Foundation/For the Cure® .
Komen Grants are available/renwable year after year.
Here are some helpful resources/books in our library on breast cancer:
*Living through breast cancer : what a Harvard doctor and survivor wants you to know about getting the best care while preserving your self-image by Carolyn M.Kaelin
(Lantana Library Call No. 616.994 Kae)
*The American breast cancer guide : a comprehensive resource directory.
(Lantana Library Call No. 616.994 Ame)
*The everything health guide to living with breast cancer : an accessible and comprehensive resource for women by Lucia Giuggio Carvalho.
(Lantana Library Call No. 616.994 Car)
*Straight talk about breast cancer : from diagnosis to recovery by Suzanne W. Braddock
(Lantana Library Call No. 616.994 Bra)