The former West Virginia public health leader forced out by the governor says decades-old computer systems and cuts to staff over a period of years had made a challenging job even harder during a once-in-a-century pandemic.
The U.S. public health system has been starved for decades and lacks the resources necessary to confront the worst health crisis in a century. An investigation by The Associated Press and KHN has found that since 2010, spending for state public health departments has dropped by 16% per capita and for local health departments by 18%. At least 38,000 public health jobs have disappeared, leaving a skeletal workforce for what was once viewed as one of the world’s top public health systems. That has left the nation unprepared to deal with a virus that has sickened at least 2.6 million people and killed more than 126,000.
El sistema de salud pública de los Estados Unidos ha subsistido en la precariedad durante décadas y carece de los recursos necesarios para enfrentar la peor crisis de salud en un siglo.
Public health officials are confronting growing pressure — and threats — across the country as the backlash to the coronavirus response continues. Senior health officials from seven California counties have resigned or retired since March 15.