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COVID-19 Highlights Urgent Need for Increased Public Health Funding

February 25, 2020

Every year, state and territorial health officials descend on the Nation’s capital to educate lawmakers on the importance of increased funding for public health. This year is no different, though there is a shadow hanging over the year’s events: COVID-19, an infectious disease that’s been spreading across the globe. On the first day of ASTHO's 'Washington Week,' the organization formally requested emergency supplemental money with the National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO), Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists (CSTE), and Association of Public Health Laboratories (APHL) in order to adequately respond to COVID-19.

Though the risk to the Americans remains low, this episode highlights why it's important for Congress and the Trump administration to support state, territorial, tribal, and local public health workforces as they respond to this possible pandemic. 


  • Nirav Shah, MD, JD, Director of the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Jim Blumenstock, Chief of Health Security, ASTHO