Public health funding

Public Health is essential. Yet, complex threats and recession budget cuts have made it harder for the public health system to protect and serve Washington’s families and communities.

2017-19: Washington State Operating Budget

In its final budget, the Legislature provided $12 million in new one-time funding for public health – the first new investment in our state’s public health agencies since 2006. Of the $12 million, $10 million is allocated to local health jurisdictions to improve their ability to address communicable disease monitoring and prevention, and chronic disease and injury prevention; $2 million is appropriated to the Washington State Department of Health as part of Foundational Public Health Services.

ESHB 1432: Foundational Public Health Services

April 4, 2017: This bill was not passed out of the fiscal committee in the Senate and is now dead for the 2017 session.

  • Defines core public health services to align with the state and national Foundational Public Health Services framework, and requires that these core services be available to every Washington resident, no matter where they live.
  • Requires a plan for implementing Shared Services to more efficiently and effectively deliver core public health services by allowing smaller jurisdictions to contract with larger jurisdictions for certain services such as epidemiology.

Washington's population has grown by more than one million residents since 2000. In that same time, when adjusted for inflation and population growth, public health funding has decreased by 40%.
Disease epidemics like Ebola and Zika are more complex and taking longer to investigate, and our population is expected to grow by another two million residents by 2025. Our families and communities deserve reliable and efficient public health services, information, and response.


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