Why Democrats Matter: Public Health

The Massachusetts Public Health Association released a statement in July about the new budget for the Department of Public Health (pdf). You'll notice that most budget items increase:

The legislature and Governor Patrick have approved $548.7 million for the Department of Public Health (DPH) in the Fiscal Year 2008 budget. This is $74.4 million (16 percent) higher than the basic FY07 DPH budget passed by the legislature a year ago. It is $31.6 million (6 percent) higher than the total currently available for FY07, including supplemental funding that was approved for use in FY07.

Here's a list of some of the changes:

â¢Universal Immunizations (4580-1000): $12 million added (33 percent increase) for the new rotavirus and HCV pediatric vaccines and to cover inflationary costs of existing pediatric and adult vaccines programs.

â¢Early Intervention Services (4513-1020): $5.3 million added (16 percent increase).

â¢Smoking Prevention and Cessation (4590-0300): $4.5 million added (55 percent increase), bringing total funding to $12.75 million in FY08.

â¢Public Health Hospitals (4590-0915): $4.4 million (3 percent) added to combined operating accounts.

â¢Suicide Prevention (4513-1026): $2.5 million added to triple current funding.

â¢Youth Violence Prevention (4590-1506): $2 million for a new program.

â¢Family Health Services (4513-1000): $1.8 million added (34 percent increase).

â¢Community Health Centers (4510-0110): $1.7 million added (30 percent increase).

â¢Teen Pregnancy Prevention (4530-9000): $998,000 added (33 percent increase).

â¢Environmental Health Services (4510-0600): $480,000 added (14 percent increase), with earmarks requiring the hiring of new food safety and indoor air quality inspectors.

Also, the state lab--the institution that keeps track of disease outbreaks and antibiotic resistance--received a desperately needed funding increase.

This didn't happen under our Republican governor, Mitt Romney. He did such a great job for Massachusetts, imagine what he could do to the whole country....

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