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The Point, July 11, 2022: Pediatric doses of COVID-19 vaccines have reached Florida

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Today's Florida stories

• Spectrum News: Florida doctors begin receiving doses of pediatric COVID-19 vaccines. "The most recent strain of the coronavirus that’s kicked up, BA.5, 'is the fifth variant of Omicron going on,' (Dr. Mohammed) Afzal said. It can cause flu-like symptoms even in young children who haven’t been getting as sick because of COVID, he said."

• Politico: Democrats battle fellow Democrats over abortion in key primaries. "Democrats running for governor in several states have started publicly chiding their primary opponents for not doing enough to ensure abortion rights in the aftermath of the Supreme Court’s recent decision to overturn the landmark 1973 Roe v. Wade decision. In Florida, Democratic Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried has hammered Rep. Charlie Crist (D-Fla.), a former Republican governor of the state, for his convoluted and evolving stance on abortion."

• WGCU-Fort Myers: DeSantis executive order takes aim at pharmacy benefit managers, prescription drug costs. "DeSantis says Executive Order 22-164 will hold pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs) more accountable. PBMs act as a third party between insurance companies and beneficiaries to manage prescription drug benefits. The order requires state agencies to review their contracts with PBMs to ensure that their costs are justified. DeSantis says the executive order also aims to curb what’s known as spread pricing and claw backs."

• Palm Beach Post ($): Is Florida’s latest COVID-19 wave over? State records 7,000 fewer cases than the week before. "It’s a big sign that the latest COVID wave, driven by mutations of the coronavirus’ omicron strain, may be crashing. The airborne pathogen has caused more than 6.5 million infections statewide since the start of the pandemic."

• Miami Herald ($): ‘Absolutely be concerned.’ Monkeypox cases are surging in South Florida. "Monkeypox can spread from person to person through contact with the infectious rash, scabs or body fluids of someone who is infected with the virus, and the disease can also be transmitted via 'respiratory secretions during prolonged, face-to-face contact, or during intimate physical contact' with a symptomatic person, according to recent guidance from the CDC."

• News4Jax: Record levels of seaweed blooms washing into Florida. "The concentration has exploded in the tropics and now covers many central and south Florida beaches with piles of smelly decomposing algae. The record abundance this year makes for a dire situation along the coast for beachcombers."

• Gainesville Sun ($): Alachua County Public Schools earns 'B' grade overall but sees drops at some schools. "While the grade keeps Alachua County still among the top districts around the state, several of its schools performed much worse."

• Tallahassee Democrat ($): 60-hour shifts and an ER scramble: Fentanyl overdoses take 'toll' on TMH, Gadsden County EMS. "'We have not seen anything like this before,' said Dr. Colby Redfield, the assistant medical director of Tallahassee Memorial HealthCare's emergency services, who has worked at TMH for six years. This influx of patients who need a high level of attention has taken 'a toll' on the TMH emergency department in recent days as other operations like CAT scans are delayed, Redfield said."

• Tampa Bay Times ($): A Tampa Bay nursing home lost its Medicare benefits. Residents lost a home. "Raydiant Health Care of Brandon lost its federal benefits because of poor patient care. About 87 elderly residents were forced to find new housing."

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From NPR News

• World: Shinzo Abe's assassination was a rare act of violence in Japan. What happens now?

• World: As gun violence rises in Canada, weapons from the U.S. complicate gun control efforts

• Health: Coronavirus FAQ: I took a trip and caught COVID. What should I do? When can I go home?

• Health: A new executive order aims to preserve abortion access, but its reach is limited

• Health: Emergency contraception: How it works, how effective it is and how to get it

• Race: Emmett Till's family says authorities are protecting the woman accused in his death

• Business: Elon Musk wants out of the Twitter deal. It could end up costing at least $1 billion

• Business: The pandemic pushed people to reevaluate their jobs. Meet 5 who reinvented themselves

About today's curator

I'm Ethan Magoc, a news editor at WUFT. Originally from Pennsylvania, I've found a home telling Florida stories. I’m part of a team searching each morning for local and state stories that are important to you; please send feedback about today's edition or ideas for stories we may have missed to emagoc@wuft.org.

Contact WUFT News by calling 352-392-6397 or emailing news @wuft.org