CDC-RFA-OE22-2203 – Project Abstract Summary
Centuries of systemic racism, settler colonialism and, oppression and underlying social and health inequities, COVID-19 and other health problems have only exacerbated the disproportionate impact of COVID-19 and other health problems on communities across Oregon. The COVID-19 pandemic highlighted the inability of the current public health system to ensure equitable health outcomes for all people in the state. In Oregon, COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations, and deaths are highest among the Pacific Islander, Latino, Latina, Latinx Black/African-American, and Tribal communities. With support through Strengthening U.S. Public Health Infrastructure, Workforce, and Data Systems, the Oregon Health Authority’s Public Health Division (OHA-PHD) will expand its multi-pronged strategy to eliminate health inequities. Implementing that strategy requires building a diverse and sustainable governmental and community-based public health workforce that will be prepared to address current and future public health emergencies and threats. This multipronged equity strategy is built on a vision for a set of foundational capabilities and includes:
• a community-based, equity-centered model for the COVID-19 response,
• a workforce development and retention strategy,
• and the Healthier Together Oregon State Health Improvement Plan.
The OHA-PHD will sustain and grow investments in a statewide community-based organization infrastructure that provides culturally and linguistically responsive supports for COVID-19 and other public health threats like wildfires, as well as provides community education, social services, and wraparound supports. This funding opportunity will support local public health authorities and Tribal governments to expand and solidify foundational capabilities which, in Oregon, include health equity and cultural responsiveness. Through this opportunity, the OHA-PHD will further solidify infrastructure with dedicated leadership to workforce development and data modernization while diversifying its workforce and continuing to implement strategies to retain public health workers in the state. Finally, the OHA-PHD will build capacity for public health system-wide data modernization initiatives that improve access to disaggregated data with meaningful context for program and policy decision-making.