INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (WOWO): Indiana Governor Eric Holcomb announced the creation of a new state public health commission Wednesday.
Holcomb says the pandemic has highlighted the importance of public health from both a wellness and economic perspective.
“Health is wealth. We’re going to continue to lean in on this, not because it’s so important today, but it always has been,” Holcomb said.
Holcomb’s executive order establishes a 15-member commission to examine Indiana’s public health system and make recommendations to improve its structure, funding and operations.
The Governor’s Public Health Commission will be co-chaired by former state Sen. Luke Kenley, who has spent decades managing complex issues and budgets for the state, and Dr. Judy Monroe, who served as Indiana’s state health commissioner from 2005 to 2010 and now serves as president and chief executive officer of the CDC Foundation. State Health Commissioner Dr. Kristina Box will serve as the commission’s secretary.
“Indiana’s public health workforce is made up of some of the most dedicated people you will ever encounter,” Dr. Box said. “They truly care about their communities and have worked tirelessly to protect Hoosiers. They deserve our heartfelt thanks, and they deserve our help. Determining what that help should look like is the goal of this commission.”
The commission will include subgroups that will examine topics ranging from funding and resources to delivery of services and collection and use of data. Its goal is to make recommendations for improvements and standardization that can be shared with the Indiana General Assembly. Such a review was planned before the pandemic, which has only exacerbated the need the modernize Indiana’s public health system.