According to a new analysis by SHADAC, Connecticut remains behind our neighboring states in per person spending on public health. The pandemic has spotlighted the critical roles of public health including emergency preparedness, disease prevention, population health monitoring, and health promotion. Public health has been responsible for most of the increases in life expectancy in the last century. Robust public health improves the health of the entire state and helps to lower healthcare costs.
While almost all states have underfunded public health, historically Connecticut has lagged most states. We spend only 1% of our state budget on public health, far less than healthcare to treat disease, many avoidable with preventive public health.
Most public health spending is funded by states with state funds. While COVID has prompted an increase in public health funding across the US, it is critical that we not forget that priority as the pandemic wanes and the state budget tightens.