GRANTS PASS, Ore. — Josephine County is considering the "transfer of certain Public Health programs to another entity," according to a statement sent out by the Board of Commissioners on Wednesday. This move would be part of an effort to "modernize the Public Health industry," the statement said.
“We have an opportunity to focus our response on the highest need for our local area, while partnering with the service providers within the community to ensure the best outcome for the health our citizens,” said Commissioner Morgan.
The Public Health programs in question include Women, Infant & Children (WIC), the Communicable Disease programs, Immunization Services, and Maternal, Child & Adolescent Health Services.
In an effort to test the waters, the County has issued a Request for Proposals—encouraging all public, private, and non-profit organizations the chance to propose "new models" for Public Health services.
According to the Board's statement, the County would retain administrative, investigative and enforcement functions for Public Health programs—even if those programs were handled by the new entities.
The move to shift these public programs away from the County is intended to reduce cost for taxpayers, improve access and quality of healthcare facilities, improve the overall health of citizens, and remove disparities in health across social and socioeconomic lines, the Board claimed.
Although the Board's statement indicated that this option was only being considered, it also promised a smooth transition as Public Health programs and services are transferred.