Health experts urge Indiana to increase public health funds

Indiana health experts are pushing for more state funding to address problems, including the opioid epidemic, tobacco use and high infant mortality rates.

Posted: Jun. 13, 2018 2:05 PM

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (AP) — Indiana health experts are pushing for more state funding to address problems, including the opioid epidemic, tobacco use and high infant mortality rates.

The Journal Gazette reports that doctors, community leaders and public policy experts discussed health-related topics Tuesday at a forum hosted by the Alliance for a Healthier Indiana.

Allen County Health Commissioner Dr. Deborah McMahan says the state doesn't put enough money into public health.

The America's Health Rankings 2017 says Indiana spends less than $62 per resident in public health funding. A recent report from the United Health Foundation says Indiana has some of the highest rates of tobacco use and obesity.

Dr. Tony GiaQuinta is president of the Indiana American Academy of Pediatrics. He says the state should increase cigarette taxes and use that revenue to boost public health efforts.

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