On Thursday, HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius announced $48.8 million in grants to health departments in all 50 states and several U.S. cities and territories to address the spread of infectious diseases, Modern Healthcare reports.
This year's awards mark the third consecutive year the grants have been distributed through the Affordable Care Act's Prevention and Public Health Fund (McKinney, Modern Healthcare, 8/16).
The grants will be used to help health departments in all 50 states, Puerto Rico, the Republic of Palau, Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, New York City, Philadelphia, and Washington, D.C., hire and train new staff, purchase new equipment and upgrade information technology systems.
Of that money, $9.3 million will be used to prevent health care-associated infections (Helper, CQ HealthBeat, 8/16). In addition, 49 states, Puerto Rico, Washington, D.C., and five U.S. cities will receive funds to increase meaningful-use capabilities to combat HAIs (Modern Healthcare, 8/16).
"Today's awards support the critical work of public health departments to prevent, track and respond to new and emerging infectious diseases," Sebelius said (Viebeck, "Healthwatch," The Hill, 8/16).