Gov. Holcomb announces creation of state public health commission

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Commission will review the state of Indiana's public health system

INDIANAPOLIS (WANE) – Gov. Eric Holcomb has announced the creation of a state public health taskforce which will examine Indiana’s public health system on Wednesday.

The commission, which will be co-chaired by former state senator Luke Kenley and Dr. Judy Monroe, the president and CEO of the CDC Foundation, will review Indiana’s public health system over the next 12 months.

Separate taskforces will focus on the following areas:

  • Emergency preparedness – Analyze state and local health departments’ response to the pandemic
  • Funding – Review the current funding level and sources for public health and make recommendations on how to standardize
  • Governance and Services – Review the structure of public health governance, number of local health departments, accreditation efforts
  • Workforce – Evaluate staffing levels to promote necessary access to care and positive health outcomes, including both public health and clinical workforces
  • Data Collection and Utilization – Review the data collected and establish uniformity and a standardized approach; Look at the ways to use data to transform public health delivery
  • Childhood and Adolescent Health Integration – Review services delivered to children and adolescents and identify ways to promote access to healthcare for children and families
Source: Indiana Department of Health

During Wednesday’s press conference, Gov. Holcomb says that the commission’s creation was not specifically prompted by the pandemic, rather it is needed to address deep-rooted issues in Indiana’s public health system.

“We’ve dealt with so many stresses and strains to the system that we believe this is the absolute right time to be leaning into this space,” Gov. Holcomb said Wednesday.

Watch the replay of Gov. Holcomb’s press conference below:

The commission is expected to report their findings to state legislators on how to improve public health services. This report will include recommendations on how to address funding challenges, promote health equity and ensure the sustainability of local health departments. From there, the commission will present recommendations on potential legislation.

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