County supervisors exploring county-based public health

Special meeting Wednesday with IDPH consultant

The board will hold a special meeting Wednesday for information and discussion of public health services with Heather Bombei, regional community health consultant with the Iowa Department of Public Health. The county supervisors are exploring the possibility of returning to a county-based public health department to combat escalating costs.

The meeting will begin at 10 am in the board room at the courthouse.

For decades the county has paid Greene County Medical Center to provide public health services to county residents. During the current year, the county is paying $150,000 to the medical center for public health.

In December, medical center CEO Carl Behne and public health director Becky Wolf told the supervisors the medical center is subsidizing public health and proposed a three-year plan to bring the county’s payment to 100 percent of the net cost. Behne and Wolf asked for $275,000 for FY18, $437,000 for FY19, and $614,000 for FY20.

The supervisors allocated $200,000 in the FY18 budget and decided to explore options for county-based public health. Guthrie County operates its public health department independent of the hospital there at a cost of $139,000 in county tax funds.


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