Florida is scheduled to issue more than 1.3 million license renewals for new and existing medical and dental practices and hospitals in 2017, a significant increase from 2016, according to a new report.
The Florida Board of Health will also extend the number of licensed practitioners and the number that can practice on a state-managed medical home, a major step toward making it easier for patients to get the medical care they need.
The state Board of Medicine, which regulates health care providers in the state, also is considering extending its license to doctors, as well as to veterinarians and optometrists.
Licensed dentists are scheduled to receive a new license, as are veterinarians, while licensed optometrist licenses are scheduled for renewal.
The board is scheduled for a vote in the coming days.
The report, released Wednesday, says the state is still trying to decide whether to extend the existing licenses and how many of those should be renewed.
But the agency is making progress in its quest to renew all state licenses, the board said in a statement.
The renewal rate is about 5.2 percent, up from about 4.7 percent in 2016, the report says.
The number of license renewings for the previous year was 7,500, and the agency expects to renew about 3,000 in the next three years.
In 2015, the last year for which the board had information, about 3.1 million renewals were issued, the state reported.
The new figures come as state lawmakers are weighing new restrictions on medical homes, including restrictions on their use for the mentally ill, terminally ill, and people who have been in intensive care units.
The House of Representatives is considering legislation to limit the number and types of patients who can use medical homes.
Some states have also enacted legislation that could limit the use of medical homes for patients who need to have surgery or chemotherapy.
The governor, who is also a physician, has signed a bill that would prohibit doctors and other health care professionals from caring for patients with intellectual disabilities, and has pledged to veto any legislation that would impose a tax on doctors’ and dentists’ practices.