State health commissioner says emergency funding needed

Published 7:40 am Thursday, May 11, 2017

ST. PAUL — Minnesota’s health commissioner is asking state legislators to provide $5 million for an emergency fund to deal with an outbreak of measles and other infectious diseases.

Dr. Ed Ehlinger says public health officials are dealing with the largest measles outbreak in Minnesota in nearly 30 years and in recent months have responded to drug-resistant tuberculosis and hundreds of new cases of syphilis.

The commissioner says current state funding doesn’t give health officials the flexibility needed to deal with emerging disease threats. Ehlinger says Gov. Mark Dayton has endorsed his request and will help push for its inclusion in the final budget agreement.

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