CDC awards $3.2 billion to promote and protect U.S. health

(Source: CNN/file)
Published: Nov. 29, 2022 at 4:31 PM CST
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WASHINGTON, D.C. (WSAW) - In a first-of-its-kind funding, the CDC awarded $3.2 billion today to help state, local, and territorial health departments provide the people, services, and systems needed to promote and protect health in U.S. communities.

“State, local, and territorial health departments are the heart of the U.S. public health system, and the COVID-19 pandemic severely stressed these agencies, which were already weakened by neglect and underinvestment,” said CDC Director Rochelle Walensky, M.D., M.P.H. “This grant gives these agencies critical funding and flexibility to build and reinforce the nation’s public health workforce and infrastructure, and protect the populations they serve. We are meeting them where they are and trusting them to know what works best for their communities.”

$3 billion from the American Rescue Plan Act will be used to recruit, retain, and train their workforce. Including critical frontline public health workers such as epidemiologists, contact tracers, laboratory scientists, community health workers, and data analysts. The funding also includes $140 million from new appropriations to strengthen and revitalize the public health infrastructure. Lastly, national partners will be awarded $65 million to provide training, evaluation, and other technical assistance to jurisdictions as they work to strengthen the services they provide and rebuild their workforce.

The CDC’s core focus was on listening to jurisdictions and partners to ensure the funding was tailored to meet their diverse needs. This grant helps to address urgent and ongoing public health needs in communities that are economically or socially marginalized, rural communities, and communities with people from racial and ethnic minority groups.

Stronger infrastructure allows public health to ensure food and water is safe, detect and track diseases, stop outbreaks, provide child and maternal healthcare, and monitor data.