DENVER, CO – Members of the Joint Budget Committee today approved an additional $3.35 million in an interim supplemental budget request from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) to aid the state’s response to the ongoing Monkeypox (MPX) public health crisis. The funding will fund CDPHE vaccine clinics and testing supplies among other priorities. “As we continue to combat the monkeypox outbreak, we need to take the lessons we learned from the COVID-19 pandemic and make sure we’re as prepared as possible to keep folks safe,” said JBC Vice Chair Chris Hansen, D-Denver. “These additional funds will provide much-needed support to help Colorado effectively respond to this virus, continue to lower transmission rates, and ensure our communities are equipped with the tools they need to keep our residents safe and healthy.” "Colorado is responding to the monkeypox virus responsibly, rapidly and with everyone's safety top of mind," said JBC Member Rep. Leslie Herod, D-Denver. "Taking the lessons learned during the COVID-19 pandemic, the JBC is allocating $3.35 million to increase the number of vaccine clinics, improve mobile clinics and educate Coloradans about the virus. This funding is directed toward lowering transmission rates, boosting equity in health care and building a healthier Colorado.” The supplemental package approved by the JBC to aid the state’s response to MPX includes the following:
$1 million to staff vaccine clinics, which will include costs for personnel, mobile and static sites, and supplies;
$900,000 to distribute to Denver Health and other safety net partners to meet increased staffing needs and to meet the rising demand in testing, treatment, and vaccination;
$183,144 for the Immunization Branch of CDPHE to purchase supplies and software related to recording, distributing, and storing vaccines;
$336,667 for the State Laboratory to support increased testing including supplies, courier services, and biohazard waste disposal;
$9,667 for the Office of Emergency Preparedness and Response (OEPR) to cover vaccine administration supplies and travel costs;
$118,000 for the Office of STI/HIV/VH (OSVH) for supplies related to outreach events and education and funding for the Community ResourceFund to support isolation for MPX positive cases; and
$791,700 for three months of CDPHE mobile vaccine units (MVUs).
The first cases of MPX were identified in Colorado in mid-May, and it was declared a national public health emergency on August 5th, prompting the CDPHE to ramp up its response to the outbreak. CDPHE has since exhausted the funding appropriated via SB21-243, and is awaiting approval for additional funding from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to redirect federal COVID-19 funding to MPX. The funding approved by the JBC today will allow the Department to immediately start using these additional resources to strengthen Colorado’s public health response to MPX. For more resources related to MPX, including information on testing, vaccines, and public health guidelines, visit the CDPHE’s website.