CDC Provides $4 Billion Boost for Health Department Infrastructure

On Thursday, June 23rd, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) unveiled its nearly $4 billion “Strengthening U.S. Public Health Infrastructure, Workforce, and Data Systems” initiative.

According to the CDC, the initiative will strengthen “public health capacity and systems related to the workforce, foundational capabilities, data modernization, physical infrastructure, and support from national public health partners.” State and local governments are eligible for grant awards ranging from $2,925,000 to $161,600,000. The National Association of Counties (NACo) notes that “over 70 percent of all local health departments are county-based” and said departments have lost “20 percent of their workforce capacity over the last decade.”

As per NACo, the CDC funding initiative breaks down as follows:

Of the total $4 billion, $3 billion will be made available to support public health workforce hiring, retention and professional development. Other components include $700 million for strengthening public health infrastructure and foundational capabilities and $200 million for data modernization.

Grant awards will support two components:

Component A of the grant may focus on public health infrastructure (i.e., workforce, foundational capabilities, data modernization, and physical infrastructure)… Component B may focus on how National Public Health Partners can provide technical assistance and evaluation support to Component A recipients.

Understanding the critical role of public health infrastructure, MACo strongly advocated for and received increased core health services funding from the state for local health departments during the 2021 Maryland General Assembly session. Increased core funding does not take effect until 2025, however, lending greater significance to the CDC’s funding initiative.

Counties must apply for grant awards by Monday, August 15th at 11:59 pm EST at grants.gov.

Read the full NACo blog post.

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