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Category archives for: Health & Society

The Scam Behind McDonald’s ‘McTeacher’s Nights’

| July 16, 2019

The fast food giant pioneered methods of attracting school children to its stores — from Happy Meals to marketing schemes like McTeacher’s Nights, an exploitative fund-raiser that takes advantage of teachers for very little in return.

Beat The Rush, Avoid Vaccine Hysteria: Get Your Free Shots at Flagler Health Department

| July 16, 2019

Vaccines for polio, measles, HPV, HepB, Varicella, Tdap and more are all available free and daily before the school year at the Flagler Health Department. Vaccines help develop immunity to many serious infectious diseases.

Appeals Court Rules Florida Marijuana Law’s Restrictions Violate Amendment Legalizing Medical Pot

| July 10, 2019

Florida’s law requiring pot operators to grow, process and distribute cannabis and related products created an “oligopoly” and runs afoul of a constitutional amendment that broadly legalized medical marijuana in the Sunshine State, an appellate court ruled Tuesday.

As Hepatatis Rates Continue to Rise, Flagler Health Department Offers Free Screenings Through July

| July 9, 2019

Baby boomers are 75 percent of Hep C cases. That’s because blood products weren’t screened for Hepatitis C before 1992, and many were likely infected when the disease was at its height during the 70s and 80s.

Bunnell Commission Ends Homeless Shelter Operations After 11 Years; Church Pledges Legal Fight

| July 8, 2019

The Bunnell City Commission voted this evening to end the operations of the Sheltering Tree, the county’s only cold-weather homeless shelter, at a church in Bunnell. The church and Sheltering Tree organizers say they will pursue legal avenues.

Florida Is The Latest Republican-Led State To Adopt Clean Needle Exchanges

| July 8, 2019

The timing of the statewide legalization of needle exchanges comes as Florida grapples with a huge heroin and fentanyl problem. When people share dirty needles to inject drugs, it puts them at high risk for spreading bloodborne infections like HIV and hepatitis C. For years, Florida has had America’s highest rates of HIV.

Inside the Secret Border Patrol Facebook Group Where Agents Joke About Migrant Deaths and Post Sexist Memes

| July 2, 2019

The three-year-old group, which has roughly 9,500 members, shared derogatory comments about Latina lawmakers who plan to visit a controversial Texas detention facility on Monday, calling them “scum buckets” and “hoes.”

Flagler’s HIV Rate More Than Doubled in 2017; Health Department Offers Free Screening on Thursday

| June 26, 2019

With the HIV infection rate reaching its highest level in Flagler County in 20 years in 2017, the Flagler Department of Health will offer free HIV screenings for county residents at the department’s facility in Bunnell on June 27 in recognition of National HIV Testing Day.

In Proxy War Over Homeless Shelter, Bunnell Shuts Down Church’s Other Relief Works

| June 24, 2019

The Bunnell commission voted 5-0 to deny First United Methodist Church on Pine Street so much as new showers or new bathrooms, in essence preventing the church from operating as an overnight relief center for volunteer emergency crews during natural emergencies.

Meth In The Morning, Heroin At Night: Inside The Seesaw Struggle of Dual Addiction

| June 24, 2019

Researchers who have tracked drug use for decades believe the new meth crisis got a kick-start from the opioid epidemic: Across the country, more and more opioid users say they now use meth as well, up from 19% in 2011 to 34% in 2017.

Bunnell’s Mean Streak

| June 24, 2019

The city that calls itself the crossroads of Flagler County is losing its bearings, its heart, and sometimes its mind–over the homeless, over panhandlers, over the sheriff’s office. It is becoming petty. It is becoming mean and resentful, and discriminatory.

State By State, the War on Pot Is Ending

| June 20, 2019

Dozens of new state laws are expanding legal cannabis use — and expunging the records of users caught up in the system. This unprecedented wave of legislative activity at the state level is yet further evidence that public consensus on cannabis legalization has undergone a seismic shift.

Flagler Health Department Wants To Offer Free HPV Vaccine to Teen Students, But School Board Is Unconvinced

| June 20, 2019

The HPV vaccine immunizes against the sexually transmitted disease and prevents nine cancers, and local immunization is very low, but two Flagler school board members are not eager to see it offered to 13 to 17 year olds.

‘Shared Savings’ By Shopping For Lower Health Care Costs? Ballyhooed Florida Plan a Bust

| June 17, 2019

The idea of Florida’s ballyhooed shared-savings programs is to give policyholders an incentive to look for cheaper health services. Early results show no such benefits.

Does Flagler Beach Have a Panhandling Problem? Not Exactly, But City Will Consider New Rules.

| June 13, 2019

The Flagler Beach City Commission this evening will discuss adopting an ordinance against “aggressive” panhandling at the urging of City Commissioner Eric Cooley, a business owner in town.

Backers and Foes of Bunnell’s Condemned Homeless Shelter Duel Ahead of Appeal

| June 12, 2019

The Bunnell City Commission got a preview of the two sharply divided sides that will appear before it again soon in defense of and in opposition to the preservation of the cold-weather shelter for the homeless at First United Methodist Church on Pine Street.

Good News: Straight People Don’t Need a Pride Parade

| June 11, 2019

Organizers of the “straight pride parade” in Boston this summer have ties to numerous far-right groups. Here are conditions that would make such a parade easier to embrace.

Why Some CEOs Are Figuring Out That ‘Medicare For All’ Is Good For Business

| June 10, 2019

As health costs continue to grow, straining employer budgets and slowing wage growth, CEOs and others in the business community are beginning to take the Medicare for All option more seriously.

Is State Law Restricting Local Governments’ Gun-Safety Ordinances Constitutional? Judge Hears Arguments.

| June 6, 2019

Florida since 1987 has barred cities and counties from passing regulations that are stricter than state firearms laws. But in 2011, lawmakers went further by approving a series of penalties that local governments and officials can face if they violate the prohibition.

Richard S. Hartung, 76, Dies in Apparent Suicide, County’s 3rd Self-Inflicted Death in 8 Days

| June 6, 2019

Flagler County Sheriff’s detectives are investigating the death by apparent suicide of Richard S. Hartung, 76, in his condominium at 7 Avenue de la Mer in Palm Coast on May 30.

Bunnell Rudely Tells Church’s Cold-Weather Shelter for Homeless to Get Out Of Town

| June 4, 2019

Bunnell’s zoning board voted to disallow the Sheltering Tree, the county’s only cold-weather shelter, from operating out of the United Methodist Church, potentially ending 11 years of service by the non-profit. The Sheltering Tree intends to appeal to the city commission.

Police Train to Be ‘Social Workers of Last Resort’ as Mental Health Calls Multiply

| June 2, 2019

Lacking proper mental health resources, families and community members across the country all too often call police to respond to someone having a mental health crisis.

Floridians Have a Right To Access Medical Malpractice Records. Shands Sues to Prevent That.

| May 30, 2019

Under Florida law, patients have the right to access adverse medical incident reports, which can play an important role in malpractice cases. UF Health Jacksonville says federal privacy law trumps Florida’s constitutional amendment.

Laws Restricting Abortion Betray a Judgment: Women’s Sexuality Is Not Equal to Men’s

| May 29, 2019

Men regulating women’s bodies through restrictive abortion laws is the tip of an iceberg in which women’s sexuality is stigmatized, de-legitimized, silenced, controlled, and misunderstood, even by women themselves.

Rotary Club of Flagler Beach Seeking Surfer Volunteers to Help at Youth Camp

| May 28, 2019

Rotary Club of Flagler Beach is looking for surfer volunteers to help at-risk and foster youth in the community learn to surf this summer in Flagler Beach.

A ‘Precedent-Setting’ Suit Puts Opioid Drugmaker Johnson & Johnson On Trial, Starting Today

| May 28, 2019

Johnson & Johnson is accused of overstating the benefits of opioids and understating their risks in marketing campaigns that duped doctors into prescribing the drugs for ailments not approved by regulators.

At Flagler’s 1st-Ever Suicide Town Hall, Hope and Resolve Confront Grim Void of Mental Health Services

| May 24, 2019

Personal stories of confronting suicide, including that of Palm Coast Mayor Milissa Holland, combined with an assessment of Flagler’s grim mental health landscape to show the county’s growing awareness and resolve not to remain entirely at the mercy of circumstances.

400,000 Florida Children Need Mental Health Services. More Than Half Get None.

| May 23, 2019

220,000 children across the state, or about one child in every classroom, get no mental health treatment for lack of providers. Florida has one psychiatrist who treats children and adolescents for every 100,000 children.

Town Hall on Suicide Awareness in Flagler Will Feature Survivors and Mental Health Experts

| May 23, 2019

Flagler Lifeline, a volunteer committee and Flagler Cares affiliate established to broaden conversation and awareness of suicide, will host the public town hall event at 6 p.m. May 23 at the Flagler County Association of Realtors building.

Medicaid Expansion in Florida Would Improve Maternal and Child Health and Reduce Racial Disparities

| May 22, 2019

States like Florida that refuse to expand Medicaid are missing an opportunity to address racial disparities in maternal health and improve child health care, according to a report released Wednesday.

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