Assessing the Level of Public Health Partner Spending Using the Funding Formula Analysis Tool

Public health partners can circumvent the political system when it lacks the will to pursue critical public health goals.

Public health partners are nongovernmental organizations, including private nonprofit community health centers and networks that deliver health services. Partnerships can accomplish goals that might otherwise be out of reach for state agencies.

In New Hampshire, partnerships are an integral component of the public health system. In 2007, more than half of New Hampshire’s public health funding originated at partner organizations. As part of its assessment of partnership activity, the New Hampshire Division of Public Health Services (DPHS) asked partners to complete a survey regarding their public health spending. This statistical investigation reviews the data collected in the DPHS survey, compares partner versus traditional funding strategies, applies the funding formula analysis tool, and estimates political support for competing funding proposals.

Key Findings:

  • Partners spent four times more than traditional public health agencies on promoting healthy behaviors.
  • Distributing all public health funds in the same way would result in extreme funding imbalances.

When severe budget limitations hamper state public health agencies, they can turn to public health partners. This article presents an investigation of funding distribution patterns among public health partners in New Hampshire.