A Good Return On Investment.
Thanks to the legislature, a one-time down payment was made toward foundational public health services. This $12 million over the 2017-2019 biennium allowed the Washington State Department of Health and local health jurisdictions across Washington to make some long overdue investment in communicable disease prevention and response. Here’s how the first year of funding was used:
For some counties, like Adams and Klickitat, these one-time dollars helped avoid program and staffing cuts.In other areas, agencies like Northeast Tri-County and Spokane Regional Health District added resources to increase immunization rates in order to prevent outbreaks in schools and child cares. The Snohomish Health District, Tacoma-Pierce Health Department, and Thurston County leveraged their funding to increase surveillance and investigation efforts in response to rising Hepatitis C and STD rates. Without sustainable funding, these efforts and others across the state will be unable to continue.
Outcomes of the Shared Services Pilots.
Of the $12 million down payment, $1 million was allocated to three pilot projects around the state. The projects highlighted below demonstrate how investing in targeted capabilities in one area can be shared across multiple counties, providing surge capacity and coordinated efforts.