Currently we’re working to reduce the number of prescription drug overdoses and deaths. The misuse of prescription drugs is a national epidemic. We’re working with the Arizona Criminal Justice Commission to attack the problem here. The funding for our prevention efforts comes from the Preventive Health and Health Services Block Grant from the CDC.
The block grant has provided strong support to states since the 1980s; the way Arizona invests the funds changes over time based on the public health needs in our state. Right now, in addition to the prescription drug initiative, we use the funding for skin cancer prevention through the SunWise program, to fund and provide assistance to county health departments to improve and protect the health of the public by advancing the quality and performance of services in their respective jurisdictions, sexual assault prevention programs, and to provide meaningful and timely Arizona health status reports using health data that is collected by the Agency.
Every year ADHS, along with the Block Grant Advisory Committee and County Health Directors, reviews data and priorities as the grant work plan is developed. We have a meeting set up where we describe the plans for investing the funding for the next year.
You are invited to attend and express your ideas for future funding; the meeting is Wednesday, May 13, at 12:30 p.m. at 150 N. 18th Avenue.