Florida is getting another round of grants from the Affordable Care Act for public health. The state was awarded nearly $1 million for immunizations and a tobacco cessation program.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services awarded Florida with $205,000 for the CDC’s “Tobacco Quitlines” program and $718,920 for the CDC’s “Strengthen Public Health Immunization” program.

From a press release about the grants from Health and Human Services:

HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius today awarded up to $137 million, partly supported by the Affordable Care Act, to states to strengthen the public health infrastructure and provide jobs in core areas of public health. Awarded in nearly every state, the grants enhance state, tribal, local and territorial efforts to provide tobacco cessation services, strengthen public health laboratory and immunization services, prevent healthcare-associated infections, and provide comprehensive substance abuse prevention and treatment.

“More than ever, it is important to help states fight disease and protect public health,” said Secretary Sebelius. “These awards are an important investment and will enable states and communities to help Americans quit smoking, get immunized and prevent disease and illness before they start.”

The grants will fund key state and local public health programs supported through the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). Most of these grant dollars come from the Prevention and Public Health Fund created by the Affordable Care Act. Additional SAMHSA dollars supplement this investment.

A spokesperson from Florida’s Department of Health says that Florida will need budget authority from the Legislature for the immunization program. However, according to the department spokesperson, for the tobacco cessation program the agency “does not need any additional spending authority from the Legislature to implement the program.”

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