Florida Resources

Florida

This page has information specific to this state, including contact information for federal and state agencies, and some key information about laws and consumer protections. Sometimes, state laws are more protective than federal law. For more information on this state's specific laws (e.g., on employment or health insurance), visit Triage Cancer's Charts of State Laws.

Advocacy

Disability Insurance

Federal Disability Programs

Private Disability Insurance

  • You can also purchase short-term and/or long-term disability insurance directly from a private insurance company or this type of insurance may be offered by your employer as an employee benefit. See our Quick Guide to Long-Term Disability Insurance for more information.

Employment

Federal Fair Employment

  • The U.S. Equal Opportunity Employment Commission (EEOC) is responsible for enforcing federal laws that make it illegal to discriminate against a job applicant or an employee because of the person's race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy, transgender status, and sexual orientation), national origin, age (40 or older), disability, or genetic information. The laws apply to all types of work situations, including hiring, firing, promotions, harassment, training, wages, and benefits. For more information about the EEOC, including how to file a complaint, visit the EEOC's websitecall 800.669.4000, or email info@eeoc.gov.
  • The Job Accommodation Network (JAN) is a program funded by the U.S. Department of Labor, that provides free, expert, and confidential guidance on job accommodations and disability employment issues. They also have several resources on how to approach an employer to request a reasonable accommodation under the Americans with Disabilities Act and a Searchable Online Accommodation Resource where individuals can find suggested accommodations based on job duties or limitations that they are experiencing. For more information, visit the JAN website, call 800.526.7234, or email jan@AskJAN.org.

State Fair Employment

State Unemployment

Vocational Rehabilitation

  • Your state's Vocational Rehabilitation agency provides vocational rehabilitation services that are designed to help job seekers with disabilities obtain competitive employment in integrated work settings. For more information on their services, eligibility requirements, and how to apply, visit the Florida Department of Education, Division of Vocational Rehabilitation, 850.245.3399

More Information

Employment – Taking Time Off

Federal Leave Laws

State Family & Medical Leave (for self & for caregivers)

  • Some states have family and medical leave that also benefits caregivers. Florida does not currently have a family & medical leave law.

State Paid Family Leave (for caregivers)

  • Some states have paid family leave for caregivers. Florida does not currently have a paid family leave law.

State Paid Sick Leave (for self)

  • Some states have paid sick leave for individuals. Florida does not currently have a paid sick leave law.
  • Some states have kinship laws that allow you to use your sick leave to care for a child. Florida does not currently have a kinship law.

State Paid General Leave (for any reason)

  • Some states provide general paid leave. Florida does not currently have a general leave law.

State Bone Marrow Donation Leave

  • Some states provide leave to donate bone marrow. Florida does not currently have a bone marrow donation leave law.

County & Local Leave

  • Some cities and counties have additional leave laws.

Workplace Leave Policies or Employment Contracts

  • Everyone’s situation is different. Check your employee handbook, your workplace policies, and/or your employment contract (if you have one) to see whether you are eligible to take paid or unpaid time off from work.

More Information

Finances

For information on financial assistance resources, you can visit the Financial Assistance Resources module at CancerFinances.org. You can then pick from the different categories of financial assistance, to find organizations that may provide financial help to you. Think creatively. For example, if you cannot find anything to help with your medical bills, you may qualify for utility assistance and shift the money you had dedicated to utilities to your medical bills.

Health Care

Health Insurance Information

Health Insurance Options

Marketplace
  • For information about options for buying health insurance from private insurance companies, as well as whether you are eligible for marketplace financial assistance, visit HealthChoices Florida, 800.396.5990.
COBRA
  • COBRA provides a way for workers and their families to temporarily maintain their employer-provided health insurance during situations such as job loss or a reduction in hours worked. If you have questions about COBRA, visit the Employee Benefits Security Administration website or call 1.866.444.3272.
Children's Health Insurance
  • Visit this site to learn about the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP) (Florida KidCare, 888.540.5437), which provides low-cost health coverage to children in families that earn too much money to be eligible for Medicaid.
  • Visit InsureKidsNow.gov to learn about free or low-cost health and dental insurance coverage options for kids and teens.
More Information

Health Insurance Appeals

  • If your health insurance company has denied coverage for your care, you can appeal that decision. The process depends on the type of health insurance that you have. Visit the Health Insurance Appeals module on CancerFinances.org to learn more about appeals.
  • If you have private health insurance (e.g., through an employer or the Marketplace), you can also file an external appeal with an entity outside of your insurance company, to see if the insurance company is required to cover your care. The external review process is either handled by the state’s insurance agency or the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services. Visit our Chart of State Laws on Health Insurance Coverage & Navigation to see who runs the external appeals process in your state.

Medicare

  • Medicare is the federal health insurance program for people who are 65 or older, certain younger people with disabilities, and people with End-Stage Renal Disease or ALS. For information about Medicare, to create a personal account where you can view your Medicare information, and to learn about plan options, visit Medicare.gov, or call 800.MEDICARE (800.633.4227)
  • Download a copy of Medicare's handbook, “Medicare & You.”
  • For help navigating Medicare, contact Florida SHINE (Serving Health Insurance Needs of Elders), 800.963.5337
  • For more information, visit Triage Cancer's Medicare Resources.

Medicaid

Health Insurance Premium Payment Program (HIPP)
  • The HIPP program can help pay your group health insurance premium (e.g., COBRA) if you are eligible for Medicaid. For more information, visit the Florida Health Insurance Premium Payment Program (FLHIPP) website or call 678.564.1162 (Press 1).
Early & Periodic Screening, Diagnostic, & Treatment (EPSDT)
  • The EPSDT benefit is a Medicaid benefit available to individuals under the age of 21.
  • States are required to provide comprehensive services needed to correct and ameliorate health conditions, including:
    • Early: Assess and identify problems early, starting at birth
    • Periodic: Check children’s health at periodic, age-appropriate intervals in comprehensive well-child visits, including health education
    • Screening: Provide physical, dental, mental, developmental, hearing, vision, and other screening or laboratory tests to detect potential problems
    • Diagnosis: Perform diagnostic tests and assessments to follow up when a risk is identified during screening and examinations
    • Treatment: Control, correct, or ameliorate any problems that are found
  • States are required to provide any additional health care services that are coverable under the federal Medicaid program and found to be medically necessary to treat, correct or reduce illnesses and conditions discovered regardless of whether the service is covered in a state's Medicaid plan. State Medicaid agencies are required to:
    • Inform all Medicaid-eligible individuals under age 21 that EPSDT services are available and of the need for age-appropriate immunizations;
    • Offer and provide, if requested and necessary, assistance with transportation to medical care.
    • Offer and provide, if requested and necessary, assistance with scheduling appointments for EPSDT visits and services.
  • Learn more about your state's program.
Children's Health Insurance
  • Visit this site to learn about the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP) (Florida KidCare, 888.540.5437), which provides low-cost health coverage to children in families that earn too much money to be eligible for Medicaid.
  • Visit InsureKidsNow.gov to learn about free or low-cost health and dental insurance coverage options for kids and teens.
In-Home Support Services (IHSS)
More Medicaid Resources

Free or Low-Cost Health Care

  • For a list of Hill-Burton Federally Funded Health Centers that are obligated to provide free or reduced-cost health care, visit the Health Resources & Services Administration (HRSA) website.
  • Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHC) are community-based health care providers that provide primary care services in underserved areas. To search for an FQHC in your state, use the Find a Health Center tool on the HRSA website.
  • To find a community clinic in your area: screenings and services in your area, visit the National Association of Free & Charitable Clinics website.
  • The National Breast & Cervical Cancer Treatment Program (NBCCEDP) provides breast and cervical cancer screenings and diagnostic services to women who have low incomes and are uninsured or underinsured. For more information about screenings and services in your area, use the CDC search tool.
  • The Breast & Cervical Cancer Treatment Program (BCCTP) provides cancer treatment benefits to eligible low-income individuals diagnosed with breast and/or cervical cancer. For more information, visit the Florida Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection Program website.

Health Care Programs & Laws

Women's Health & Cancer Rights Act (WHCRA)
Privacy
State Clinical Trials Law

Florida Clinical Trial Compact

This is not a law, but it is an agreement between private insurance providers and only applies to providers who have signed onto the compact and voluntarily agreed to cover routine costs of patient care for those in clinical trials. As of 2010, these providers include Humana, Blue Cross Blue Shield Florida, AvMed Health Plans, Vista Healthplan, Aetna, CIGNA, and UnitedHealth Group Florida.

Phase II, Phase III, or Phase IV clinical trials are covered for cancer if the in-network physician recommends participation in the cancer clinical trial.

To be covered, the clinical trial must either involve a drug that is exempt under federal regulations from a new drug application or must be a trial that is approved by (1) A cooperative group or one of the National Institutes of Health; (2) U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), in the form of an investigational new drug application; (3) U.S. Department of Defense; (4) U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs; (5) National Cancer Institute; or (6) An accredited institutional review board of any accredited school of medicine, nursing, or pharmacy or licensed children’s specialty hospital in Florida.

The Clinical Trial Compact covers “Routine patient care costs,” which means the costs of health care services, including drugs, items, devices, and services that would be covered under the patient’s health plan if they were provided outside of a cancer clinical trial.

(Last updated 8/2022)

More Health Insurance Resources

Housing

  • The Florida Commission on Human Relations is responsible for enforcing state fair housing laws. For more information, or if you think you have experienced housing discrimination, contact the Florida Commission on Human Relations, 850.488.7082, 800.342.8170
  • For information, visit our Cancer Finances module on Housing Rights & Financial Help.

State Cancer Information

Transportation

  • Local transit systems may provide free or discounted rates for low-income individuals and families. Some cities also offer bus passes, vouchers for taxi or ride-sharing services, or shuttle services for patients traveling to cancer treatments.
  • Dial 211 for assistance.