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The Florida Senate

President Office — Press Release


January 23, 2024

CONTACT: Katie Betta, (850) 487-5229

LIVE HEALTHY: Senate Committees Advance Streamlined Licensure Pathway, Expanded Services for Floridians with Disabilities

SB 1600 by Senator Collins creates a pathway to licensure for out-of-state health care providers moving to Florida, SB 1758 by Senator Brodeur expands services to Floridians with disabilities

Tallahassee —

Florida Senate Committees today advanced two key components of the Senate’s “Live Healthy” agenda, designed to grow Florida’s health care workforce, increase access, and incentivize innovation. The Committee on Health Policy, chaired by Senator Colleen Burton (R-Lakeland), passed Senate Bill (SB) 1600, Interstate Mobility, by Senator Jay Collins (R-Tampa) to create a streamlined licensure pathway for out-of-state providers moving to Florida. The Committee on Children, Families, and Elder Affairs, chaired by Senator Ileana Garcia (R-Miami), passed SB 1758 by Senator Jason Brodeur (R-Sanford), Individuals with Disabilities, to expand services to Floridians with disabilities.

“Here in the free state of Florida, we respect the dignity of work, and we have so many great job opportunities available in thriving communities across our state. While important and necessary for ensuring safety, sometimes when people move to a new state, the process to apply for a professional license can create unneeded hurdles that delay an excellent employee’s entry into our state workforce,” said Senator Collins. “As Florida continues to grow, the need for seasoned and experienced health care providers, and workers in many other growing industries, is abundantly clear. This legislation maintains critical qualification and background check requirements, while streamlining the process to begin the dream of living and working in the Sunshine State.”

“Everyone deserves a chance to live healthy, and for our fellow Floridians with disabilities that means living independently, at home in our communities, for as long as they possibly can. Caregivers, particularly family members of those with disabilities, are truly amazing people who sacrifice so much. As a caregiver ages, it can be more difficult for our neighbors with disabilities to receive care at home, accelerating the need for additional services,” said Senator Brodeur. “The last thing we want is for loving families to be separated. This bill prioritizes home-based care options and associated funding for those with an aging caregiver, so both the caregiver and the person with a disability can live a happy, safe, and healthy life in their own home.”

Creating a pathway to licensure for health care providers moving to Florida

SB 1600 creates the MOBILE Act, which requires the Department of Health (DOH) to issue a license or certificate by endorsement within 15 days of receiving all required documents for out-of-state-health care providers moving to Florida. To qualify, the provider must meet specific criteria, including various occupational testing, training, and experience qualifications for their profession.

Background: Endorsement is a kind of licensure for individuals in a specific profession who hold an equivalent certification issued by another state. DOH regulates health practitioners for the preservation of the health, safety, and welfare of the public. The Division of Medical Quality Assurance, within the DOH, works in conjunction with 22 regulatory boards and four councils to license and regulate health care professions. Each profession is regulated by an individual practice act and by Florida law. SB 1600 also creates licensure by endorsement for several professions regulated by the Department of Business and Professional Regulation.

Expanding Services for Floridians with Disabilities

SB 1758 modifies the application process for Agency for Persons with Disabilities (APD) services, adding an online application process and streamlining the timeframe to determine eligibility.  The bill reduces the age requirement for a person’s caregiver in pre-enrollment category 4 from 70 years of age to 60 years of age, or older. This will allow a more individuals to be included in category 4 of the pre-enrollment prioritization list.

Individuals may also be eligible for the consumer-directed care (CDC+) program, which is an alternative to the iBudget program. In the CDC+ program, individuals can use a monthly budget allocation to purchase the long-term care services they feel are the best fit for their needs. The bill requires iBudget waiver support coordinators to inform iBudget clients of the option to apply for the CDC+ program when creating family or individual support plans. The bill appropriates $38.9 million funding to the Agency for Persons with Disabilities for the 2024-2025 fiscal year to expand the number of Floridians with Disabilities who receive home and community-based care waiver services. 

Background: The APD administers services to individuals with developmental disabilities through federally funded Medicaid waiver programs. APD’s iBudget program permits individuals to receive home and community-based waiver services and select the services best suited for them while living in their home. When an individual applies for waiver services, but funding is not available, the individual is placed in a pre-enrollment category that prioritizes enrollment based on need. The bill elevates the category of need for people whose caregiver is 60 years of age or older, rather than 70.


Passed Unanimously

  • SB 7016, Health Care, grows Florida’s health care workforce, removes regulations to increase workforce mobility, and expands access to quality, efficient health care.
  • SB 7018, Health Care Innovation, incentivizes innovation in the health care industry through investments in technology.

Additional Live Healthy Legislation

  • SB 1600, Interstate Mobility, creates a streamlined licensure pathway for out of state providers moving to Florida. (Next Stop – Committee on Regulated Industries)
  • SB 1758, Individuals with Disabilities, expands services to Floridians with disabilities. (Next Stop – Committee on Fiscal Policy)
  • SB 330, Behavioral Health Teaching Hospitals, establishes a new category of teaching hospitals focused on behavioral health. (First Stop - Appropriations Committee on Health and Human Services)
  • SB 1640, Payments for Health Care Services, expands health care price transparency. (First Stop – Committee on Banking and Insurance)