Our Priorities

Addressing the Spread of Infectious Diseases

Local health departments in California are directly responsible for preventing and controlling the spread of infectious diseases through immunizations, epidemiologic surveillance, disease investigation, laboratory testing and response activities. In a time where state and federal resources have decreased, the rates of communicable diseases, such as sexually transmitted diseases are steadily increasing. In recent years local health departments have encountered large-scale disease outbreaks, such as hepatitis A, adversely impacting the health of vulnerable communities and requiring a redirection of resources away from other vital public health activities.

Local health departments seek a substantial investment of resources to local health departments to combat and prevent communicable diseases throughout the state.

Educating Californians about the Risks of Cannabis Use and Monitoring Adverse Impacts

As California continues to implement a system of legalized adult cannabis use, California’s local health departments have been focused on efforts preventing cannabis use among youth and adults. In order to measure the impacts on the health of these populations, a statewide infrastructure is needed to monitor the use and associated risks of cannabis.

Local health departments strongly encourage that resources be allocated to: 1) educate Californians about the adverse impacts of cannabis use; and 2) monitor the impacts of cannabis legalization on California’s communities.

Reducing Opioid-Related Harms to California’s Communities

The opioid epidemic is taking a devastating toll across California. Local health departments are key partners in local opioid coalitions and play a key role in distributing naloxone products and providing prevention and education services to their communities.

Local health departments encourage policy makers to invest resources to strengthen local surveillance and use data for overdose prevention activities, as well as consider expanding access to high quality evidence-based drug treatment programs and harm reduction services.

Preventing Chronic Diseases Amongst Californians

Chronic diseases, such as heart disease, diabetes, and obesity, are the leading cause of death and disability in California and continue to plague our state, particularly in disadvantaged communities. Local health departments seek to decrease chronic diseases through employing varied strategies such as reducing food deserts, creating safe neighborhoods, educating communities on healthy food and beverage choices and promoting other healthy behaviors.

Local health departments request a sustainable and flexible source of funding to prevent and decrease chronic diseases within our communities.