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Justine Griffin - Medical Reporter

Medical Reporter

I cover health and medicine for the Tampa Bay Times. That could be anything related to your health, from the evolution of health insurance to medical marijuana. I'm a native Floridian who grew up in Pasco County. Prior to covering health care, I was a business reporter writing about retail, tourism and other consumer topics. Before joining the Times in 2015, I worked for the St. Augustine Record, the Sun Sentinel and the Sarasota Herald-Tribune, where I gained national attention for my retail coverage and for a long-form article I wrote about my experience as an egg donor. I'm a graduate of the University of Central Florida (Go Knights!), where I studied journalism. I'm also an equestrian. My horse's name is Mikey.

  1. "Doctor" Jeremiah Corouthers, 8, puts a cast on a teddy bear with child life specialist Amanda Petryszak during the annual Doctors for a Day event in March at St. Joseph's Children's Hospital in Tampa. The burden of caregiving is increasingly falling on Florida families, according to an AARP report.
    There are nearly 3 million caregivers in Florida helping care for relatives, and it’s costing them time and money. But some help is on the way.
  2. Pharmacist Wendy Sullivan gives a flu shot to Luz Acevedo at the Town 'N Country Senior Center in 2012. The 2019-20 flu season is expected to be a hard one, with Hillsborough County already leading the state in outbreaks.
    The county leads the state in flu outbreaks so far this season, prompting an official call for parents to get their kids vaccinated.
  3. Dr. Philip Adler treated generations of Tampa children, including Hannah Millman, who was 2 years old at the time of this visit.
    The Tampa pediatrician also played a prominent role in desegregating local hospital care.
  4. Reginald Ferguson, center, a resident of the Kenwood Inn in St. Petersburg, talks with Rachel Ilic, an environmental epidemiologist, left, and Fannie Vaughn, right, a nurse with the Florida Department of Health in Pinellas County. The health team was encouraging residents to get vaccinated against hepatitis A, part of a larger effort to address an outbreak of the virus in Florida.
    The effort started in Pinellas, where health department “foot teams” are knocking on doors in neighborhoods at higher risk for the virus.
  5. A nurse at Tampa General Hospital holds a special stethoscope used for critical patients in the Jennifer Leigh Muma Neonatal Intensive Care Unit there. The hospital received a C grade from Leapfrog, an independent nonprofit which ranks hospitals nationally for patient safety.
    Leapfrog, an independent nonprofit, rated hospitals based on hand washing, infection rates, patient falls and other factors.
  6. Nurses at Tampa General Hospital came up with the idea to turn sterile mats used in the operating room into sleeping bags for the homeless. From left are: Lucy Gurka, Claudia Hibbert, Karley Wright and Nicole Hubbard.
    The paper-thin material is waterproof and holds heat, “like an envelope that you can slide into.”
  7. This 2008 photo from the Virginia Tech Department of Entomology shows a female bed bug, right, and her offspring. Pinellas County health officials investigating a rash outbreak among patrons of the Pelican Pub found two bed bugs, one live and one dead, in the St. Petersburg bar. The insects, along with cleaning solutions used by the bar, are being investigated as possible causes of the rash.
    It’s possible, experts say. The insects don’t always hang out on soft surfaces. But other causes are being looked at too.
  8. Lauren Bedor, 31, visited the Pelican Pub in June. Days after, her legs broke out in a red, irritated rash that took weeks to resolve.
    Health inspectors made notes about bed bugs and cleaning formula. The downtown St. Pete bar will close until the issue is resolved.
  9. Sandra Wells, right, a health care navigator at the University of South Florida, assists Tampa resident Lourdes Castellano with her health care coverage options during Obamacare open enrollment in 2018. This year, navigators like Wells are in short supply, leaving many areas of Florida with little access to help.
    Budget cuts mean residents in many areas won’t have as much help signing up. But the state is expected to lead the nation in enrollment, again.
  10. Stephanie Vold, a medical assistant and intake specialist for OnMed, holds the door while Austin White, president and CEO of the company, talks with a nurse practitioner during a demonstration of their new telehealth system at Tampa General Hospital on Tuesday. The hospital is the first to deploy the OnMed station and plans to install them at other locations.
    The closet-size “office” with a life-size screen is another example of the changing face of medicine.