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Challenges ahead for new Florida surgeon general Armstrong

TALLAHASSEE — The state's new surgeon general says he has no delusions about the tough job before him.

Dr. John Armstrong leads an agency in transition, some even say turmoil. The Department of Health is in the middle of a massive reorganization and downsizing, and some public health advocates have criticized the changes. A long list of top department officials have resigned or been forced out.

Armstrong, hired away from the University of South Florida, is the second surgeon general since Gov. Rick Scott took office 18 months ago.

It's his turn to figure out how to navigate the state's rocky political waters.

"I'm a realist, and so, candidly, there was really no secret that our Department of Health had been under a magnifying glass for the past two legislative sessions," the 49-year-old said. "And the way I think about it is that if you're under a magnifying glass on a hot Florida day, not only can people see your issues, you also can feel the heat."

Read more here.

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