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Kathleen McGrory, Times Staff Writer

Kathleen McGrory

Kathleen McGrory is a health and medicine reporter at the Tampa Bay Times. Before joining the newspaper in 2015, she spent seven years as a metro reporter for the Miami Herald and two years as a government reporter in the Tampa Bay Times/Miami Herald Tallahassee Bureau. She speaks Spanish and holds degrees from Hamilton College in Clinton, N.Y., and the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism.

Phone: (727) 893-8330

Email: kmcgrory@tampabay.com

Twitter: @kmcgrory

 

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  1. 'Please don't let me die.' Gus Bilirakis hears from district on Obamacare

    Blog

    Rep. Gus Bilirakis issued the call to residents of his conservative district on Facebook: Come share your thoughts on the future of health care.

    More than 200 people took the Republican congressman up on it, packing a Palm Harbor community center on Saturday morning so tightly that late-comers had to park down the street.

    The twist: Despite the demographics of the district, which includes all of Pasco and parts of Pinellas and Hillsborough counties, nearly all the guests came to support for the Affordable Care Act, the Obama-era health law now on the chopping block....

    Hundreds turned out for a town hall meeting Saturday called by Republican Rep. Gus Bilirakis. In this largely conservative district, the crowd was overwhelmingly pro-Obamacare. Despite their strong statements, Bilirakis favors repealing the Affordable Care Act to resolve its flaws.
  2. A Bilirakis gathering turns out to be strongly pro-Obamacare

    Health

    PALM HARBOR — Rep. Gus Bilirakis issued the call to residents of his conservative district on Facebook: Come share your thoughts on the future of health care.

    More than 200 people took the Republican congressman up on it, packing a Palm Harbor community center on Saturday morning so tightly that late-comers had to park down the street.

    The twist: Despite the demographics of the district, which includes all of Pasco and parts of Pinellas and Hills- borough counties, nearly all the guests came to support the Affordable Care Act, the Obama-era health law now on the chopping block....

    Hundreds turned out in support of the Affordable Care Act at a town hall meeting Saturday with Republican Rep. Gus Bilirakis.
  3. Researcher left Moffitt under a cloud from journal articles

    Research

    TAMPA — A longtime researcher who retracted 19 articles from the Journal of Biological Chemistry last month has parted ways with Moffitt Cancer Center, the center confirmed Tuesday.

    Dr. Jin Cheng asked to have his work withdrawn after an investigation found he used the same images to represent different experimental conditions, the journal's deputy editor Fred Guengerich said....

    Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa. [Times files]
  4. Despite Obamacare rate hikes, advocates say many plans in Florida will be affordable in 2017

    Health

    Open enrollment for individual health insurance starts Tuesday — and local shoppers are already bracing for rate hikes.

    Florida won't be immune from the increases that made national headlines this week. Premiums for plans offered on and off the Affordable Care Act exchanges will rise by an average of 19 percent statewide, according to the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation.

    Still, advocates insist the plans will be economical. A study released by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services found 84 percent of Florida consumers will be able to purchase a plan with monthly premiums of $100 or less....

    Dr. Avery Rosnick-Slyker, of  USF's Florida Covering Kids & Families initiative, helped 26-year-old Nickolas St. Cyr purchase individual health insurance in 2015. The next Obamacare enrollment period begins on Nov. 1, 2016. [WILL VRAGOVIC   |   Times]
  5. Whatever your situation, Medicare's open enrollment period is a chance to reassess

    Life Times

    It's that time again.

    No, we're not talking about the return of pumpkin-spice-flavored everything, though that's definitely happening, too. We're talking about Medicare, the federal health insurance program for seniors.

    Oct. 15 marks the start of the annual open enrollment period for Medicare plans. The window, one of the few times enrollees can change their coverage, runs through Dec. 7....

    iStockphoto
  6. Hurricane Matthew surges north

    Hurricanes

    JACKSONVILLE

    A relentless Hurricane Matthew came at Florida's northeast coast like a bulldozer Friday, driving thick walls of water over the dunes that chewed up roads and flooded residential neighborhoods.

    The monster storm was blamed for at least six deaths in the state, forced hundreds of thousands of people to evacuate and disrupted electric service to nearly 1.2 million customers in 25 counties....

    Trooper Paul Thompson with Florida Highway Patrol works to clear a pine tree that had fallen from the winds of Hurricane Matthew from the northbound lanes of I-95 near Edgewater, Fla. on Friday, Oct. 7, 2016.
  7. Hurricane Matthew begins its assault on Florida

    Hurricanes

    JENSEN BEACH

    Millions of Floridians braced Friday morning as Hurricane Matthew lashed the state's east coast with dangerous winds and 9-foot storm surges.

    The storm, already blamed for nearly 300 deaths in the Caribbean, approached as a Category 4 hurricane Thursday night, capable of inflicting catastrophic damage. It packed sustained winds of 130 mph, strong enough to snap trees and power poles and obliterate homes in its direct path. Few storms that powerful have hit the Sunshine State....

    People line up to check into a shelter at Mainland High School ahead of Hurricane Matthew in Daytona Beach, Fla. on Thursday, Oct. 6, 2016.
  8. As Hurricane Matthew strengthens, evacuations ordered for Florida's east coast

    Hurricanes

    FORT PIERCE — A monstrous Hurricane Matthew menaced Florida late Wednesday, maintaining a potentially disastrous trajectory that could rake the state's entire Atlantic coast and force the largest evacuation in state history.

    The Category 3 storm prompted mandatory evacuations in Brevard, Martin and Palm Beach counties, with more expected Thursday. Gov. Rick Scott urged Floridians to heed the orders, and activated 1,500 members of the Florida National Guard. ...

    Workers from Armstrong Construction put plywood over windows of a home in preparation for Hurricane Matthew Wednesday, Oct. 5, in Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla. People boarded up beach homes, schools closed and officials ordered evacuations along the East Coast on Wednesday as Hurricane Matthew tore through the Bahamas and took aim at Florida, where the governor urged coastal residents to "leave now" if they were able. [Will Dickey/The Florida Times-Union via AP]
  9. Amid cancer research push, Tampa's Moffitt Cancer Center earns top national designation

    Health

    TAMPA — Moffitt Cancer Center has once again been awarded the National Cancer Institute's top title, Moffitt officials announced Thursday.

    The NCI's prestigious "Comprehensive Cancer Center" designation honors cancer research institutions for their scientific leadership and the depth and breadth of their work. Currently, only 47 cancer centers in the United States hold the title.

    Moffitt is the only one based Florida. The Mayo Clinic, which is based in Minnesota but has a location in Jacksonville, is also a Comprehensive Cancer Center....

    The National Cancer Institute has once again awarded Tampa’s Moffitt Cancer Center its top designation for cancer research and scientific leadership. [OCTAVIO JONES | Times] 
  10. No Labor Day holiday for mosquito-control workers as storm improves conditions for Zika spread

    Health

    Hurricane Hermine toppled trees, deluged roads and knocked out power as it blew across Florida on Thursday night.

    And some experts say the first hurricane to make landfall in Florida in 11 years could also complicate matters when it comes to Zika, the mosquito-borne virus that can cause devastating birth defects.

    Florida is the only state where Zika is spreading by mosquitoes, namely the species known as Aedes aegypti. State health officials have confirmed 49 locally acquired cases, including one in Pinellas County....

    A Hillsborough County mosquito control truck drives through neighborhoods in the Summerfield subdivision in Riverview in late May 2016. Tampa Bay area mosquito control departments will be doing more of the same during Labor Day weekend in the wake of Hurricane Hermine. The storm improved conditions for the spread of Zika, experts say. [LUIS SANTANA  |   Times]
  11. Shorts you can wear to work? They *do* exist

    Blog

    I was secretly thrilled when Deal Diva Lisa asked me to write this post.

    She had noticed my work shorts.

    I bought said shorts three weeks earlier to take to a conference in California. I was looking for a unicorn: an outfit that was clearly business attire, but also kind of funky. Long pants were out of the question. I had been forewarned that some of the conference would take place outside, and temperatures would rise into the 90s....

    It's a summer miracle.
  12. U.S. News names Tampa General Hospital tops in region

    Health

    Tampa General Hospital is the best hospital in the region and the third best in Florida, according to rankings released Tuesday by U.S. News & World Report.

    Other top performers in the area included Morton Plant Hospital in Clearwater and St. Joseph's Hospital in Tampa. The two facilities tied for eleventh place in the state.

    Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa, meanwhile, was named the sixth best hospital for cancer in the nation, up from its 18th-place finish last year. Hospital officials said the jump was partly because Moffitt took steps to earn a prestigious designation from the American Nurses Association....

    A new report named Tampa General Hospital the best hospital in the Tampa Bay region. [JOHN PENDYGRAFT  |  Tampa Bay Times] 
  13. Dean sees bright present and future for USF's medical school

    Medicine

    Much has changed at the University of South Florida Morsani College of Medicine since Dr. Charles Lockwood took over as dean two years ago.

    School leaders are designing a new downtown Tampa campus, an 11-story tower that will feature state-of-the-art classrooms and laboratories.

    Applications are up from about 3,900 to about 6,270, as are accepted students' scores on the Medical College Admissions Test, or MCAT....

    An artist's rendering of the University of South Florida's new Morsani College of Medicine and USF Health Heart Institute, an 11-story building that will house USF's new medical school campus in downtown Tampa. The plan calls for it to be built next to a medical arts building and a parking garage  on an acre of land donated by Tampa Bay Lightning owner Jeff Vinik across from the home of his hockey team, the Amalie Arena. [Courtesy of University of South Florida]
  14. CDC grants state $1.3 million to fight Zika

    Blog

    Federal health officials are giving Florida more than $1.3 million to help prevent the spread of Zika, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced Friday. 

    All told, the CDC is distributing $25 million  to 53 state, city, and territorial health department in areas at risk for outbreaks of the mosquito-borne Zika.‎ 

    The funds, which can go toward the purchase of repellent, screens, and supplies for Zika prevention kits, will be available next week. ...

  15. First baby delivered in Florida with Zika-related microcephaly

    Health

    Doctors have delivered the first baby in Florida with Zika-related microcephaly, state health officials said Tuesday.

    The child's mother is a Haitian citizen who contracted the mosquito-borne virus while in her home country, the Department of Health said. She came to Florida to give birth.

    It was not announced where in the state the baby was born.

    As of Monday, 223 people in Florida, including 40 pregnant women, have been diagnosed with Zika. All of the cases are travel-related, meaning the people contracted the virus while traveling overseas or had sexual intercourse with someone who had recently traveled abroad. ...

    At least 223 people in Florida have contracted the mosquito-borne Zika virus, including 40 pregnant women. All of the cases are travel-related, meaning the people contracted the virus while traveling overseas or had sexual intercourse with someone who had recently traveled abroad. [Associated Press]