South Florida Hospital News
Wednesday December 19, 2018

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December 2018 - Volume 15 - Issue 6




On Wednesday, the Florida Department of Health announced its intent to award WellCare with a statewide contract to implement a new service delivery model for the Children's Medical Services (CMS) Health Plan. CMS Health Plan covers more than 60,000 medically complex children who are covered by Medicaid or the Children's Health Insurance Program. It is also Florida's only specialty health plan for children and youth with special health care needs.

Officials at Boca Raton Regional Hospital today announced that Fitch Ratings has upgraded the rating of Boca Raton Regional Hospital bonds from BBB+ to A-. The Rating Outlook also improved from Stable to Positive. 
In 2008, when Boca Regional was facing daunting financial challenges, its bonds had been rated BBB- with a Negative Outlook by Fitch. Mirroring its financial turnaround, the Hospital has seen steady improvement with successive improved ratings from BBB-, to BBB, to BBB+ and now culminating with its most recent A- Positive Outlook. 

Palm Beach Gardens Medical Center recently celebrated its volunteers at its annual volunteer luncheon.  The luncheon honored those who have dedicated more than 679,000 hours of hospital service since 1973.  Among those who were recognized was Martha Duncan, who has been volunteering for 40 years.  The hospital selected Duncan as its volunteer of the year.  

Susan G. Komen®, the world’s largest nonprofit funder of breast cancer research outside the U.S. government, today hailed work led by Komen Scholar and Promise Grant Recipient Dr. Matthew Ellis, MB, BChir., Ph.D., FRCP and Komen-funded researcher Shyam Kavuri, Ph.D., which could help improve outcomes for patients with estrogen receptor positive (ER+) breast cancer. Their research, published today in Nature Communications, identified several mutations that have never before been associated with poor outcomes in ER+ breast cancer patients – information that could help better direct treatment and guide future clinical trials to prevent breast cancer recurrence and mortality.

The Florida Department of Health is pleased to announce that Dr. Yesenia Diaz Villalta has been selected as administrator for the Florida Department of Health in Miami- Dade County (DOH-Miami-Dade). She was appointed by State Surgeon General and Secretary Dr. Celeste Philip and approved unanimously by the Miami-Dade Board of County Commissioners.

Ana Sandoval Leon, M.D., a medical oncologist specializing in the treatment of breast cancer, has joined Miami Cancer Institute, a part of Baptist Health South Florida and the state’s only member of the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Alliance.  Dr. Sandoval Leon has expertise in the use of the most advanced systemic therapies, such as chemotherapy, hormone therapy and targeted therapy, both in the adjuvant and metastatic setting. She will work closely with the Institute’s multidisciplinary team of breast cancer experts to provide coordinated, evidence-based care to each of her patients.   

A team of University of Miami Miller School of Medicine faculty, along with collaborators from the University of Pittsburgh, today presented the first report of acute symptoms and clinical findings in 25 diplomatic personnel living in the U.S. Embassy in Havana, Cuba, who experienced severe neurosensory symptoms after exposure to a unique sound and pressure phenomenon. 

Coral Gables Hospital paid tribute to its dedicated physicians on Cuban Doctors’ Day which commemorates the birthday of Carlos Finlay, a Cuban physician and scientist recognized as a pioneer in yellow fever research. The physicians at Coral Gables Hospital enjoyed a special lunch and dessert spread. “We wanted to thank all our physicians for all that they do to take care of our patients,” said Cristina Jimenez, Chief Executive Officer of Coral Gables Hospital. 
The holidays are extra special this year for a Broward County teen who went home for the holidays with a second chance at life as well as for the medical and heart transplant teams from Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital who made it happen. 
Timothy Jones received a new heart during the early morning hours of December 1st, just a few weeks after his 16th birthday, making him the 50th transplant recipient for the Pediatric Heart Transplant Team at Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital.

Judge Reed O’Connor’s decision is a stunning display of judicial activism. Judicial power does not extend to settling policy disputes or exercising general supervision over the other branches of the federal government. Congress declined to repeal the ACA on more than 70 occasions. Yet, this judge has stepped in and single-handedly done has what Congress chose not to do – with a weak, unprecedented interpretation of “standing,” a failure to grapple with binding legal precedent, and an indefensible understanding of the interplay between the ACA, the Supreme Court’s decision in NFIB, and the TCJA.

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