Society Letters

Public Health Infrastructure Sign-on Letter

February 12, 2021

Dear Speaker Pelosi, Majority Leader Schumer, Leader McConnell, and Leader McCarthy:

As Congress undertakes the next iteration of legislation to speed the response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the undersigned organizations urge you to include a significant, long-term investment in public health infrastructure and workforce. This investment is critical to support the public health system to better respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, but also to strengthen it before the next pandemic hits and avoid the loss of life and social and economic disruption we are experiencing today. The pandemic has clearly shown that our federal public health priorities cannot be reached without the critical work of state, local, tribal and territorial health departments. The importance of strong, predictable federal investment in this system is even more vital now as the economic impacts of the pandemic are felt nationwide. State and local governmental budgets, and therefore public health budgets, have already been devastated and are projected to continue to decline.1,2 This will leave our nation even more vulnerable to emerging health risks. By building the core public health infrastructure in states, localities, tribal governments and territories, as well as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the nation will be better prepared for the next threat."

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