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Though health care reform wasn't a top priority for Florida lawmakers this year, more than two dozen health care-related bills were introduced in the recent session.
Several new laws resulted from frustration felt by HMO members over restrictions imposed by managed care organizations.
Among the most significant new laws is one that allows HMO patients to visit a skin specialist up to five times a year without getting approval from a primary care physician.
Gov. Lawton Chiles said the bill was reasonable, despite his strong support for the "managed care gatekeeper concept ..."
Opponents argued that the law flies in the face of what managed care tries to accomplish: saving money by managing a patient's care. …