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Strengthening U.S. Public Health Infrastructure, Workforce, and Data Systems

The COVID-19 pandemic has emphasized the critical importance of a robust public health system. The pandemic also accentuated long-standing weaknesses and created new challenges to the U.S. public health infrastructure. Public health departments and other public health partners need to continue their work to respond to COVID-19 and prepare for other public health emergencies that arise in the future. Moreover, COVID-19 has affected nearly every aspect of healthcare and public health, laying bare disparities and gaps in some conditions and worsening others. Public health agencies need the capacity to regain their footing in these areas and then accelerate their efforts. This funding is a first of its kind, non-categorical and cross-cutting programs, intended to help meet critical infrastructure and workforce needs in the short-term; and it should also make possible strategic investments that will have lasting effects on public health agencies across the United States. To that end, it will support strategically strengthening public health capacity and systems related to the workforce, foundational capabilities, data modernization, physical infrastructure and support from national public health partners. Component A of the grant may focus on public health infrastructure (i.e., workforce, foundational capabilities, data modernization, and physical infrastructure) while Component B may focus on how National Public Health Partners can provide technical assistance and evaluation support to Component A recipients. In the workforce area, infrastructure needs include adding new staff, retaining existing staff, better addressing staff wellness, providing more and better training and professional development opportunities, and improving systems and capacity related to workforce development and management. Maximum flexibility will be provided to the recipients to contract with any organization deemed appropriate to accomplish the goal of expanding the public health workforce in jurisdictions. There will be no restrictions on the types of positions that can be hired. Investments and improvements to data systems (I.e., Data Modernization Initiative) will serve to improve efficiency and effectiveness of those organizations’ operations and public health work, including their ability to partner in a complex health and health care environment. Similarly, other investments and improvements to foundational capabilities, including physical infrastructure, will help modernize public health agencies and position them to be even better service providers and partners. These outcomes will lead to public health services being expanded, improved, and accelerated, and in turn public health outcomes including COVID-19 will be better addressed. The cornerstone of all this work will be demonstrating and improving the health department's ability to advance health equity and address health disparities for populations at higher risk and in medically underserved communities. Across areas, this should be part of a transformation of public health agencies needed to meet the evolving and complex needs of the U.S. population. This transformation will not only involve improvements and changes to public health internal systems and operations; it will also involve repositioning public health entities within the larger health and health care systems in which they operate. This will necessarily involve creating and strengthening partnerships at all levels. This program will also help to address the historic underinvestment in communities that are economically or socially marginalized, rural communities, and communities with people from racial and ethnic minority groups. This program also should support larger efforts to rebalance these investments and serve communities and populations that deserve more and better public health services. Some parts referred to as strategies in this NOFO may be approved but unfunded (ABU) contingent upon the availability of funding and stipulations of appropriations. All recipients will receive workforce funding under Component A and recipients of Component B will also be funded. All awards are subject to availability of funds.

Funding Organization
US Department of Health and Human Services Centers for Disease Control - CSELS
Funding Category
Other Health-Related
Support Types
Discretionary Grants
Eligible Organizations
City Agencies
County Agencies
State Agencies
Number of Awards Given
116 Awards
This NOFO is complementary and non-duplicative of many CDC program activities, public health priorities, and strategies, in particular: CDC-RFA- PS19-1901: Strengthening Sexually Transmitted Disease Prevention and Control for Health Departments - Supplement for Disease Intervention Services (DIS) Workforce Development
Application Due Date
Application Contact
Grants Management Specialist
Technical Contact
Technical Assistance
Health Care Planning
Health Care Programs/Services
Health Services Organizations

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