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COVID-19 has highlighted health disparities — differences in health and health care experienced by groups based on social, economic and environmental factors. This panel discussion will examine the various policy approaches that state leaders have taken to reduce health disparities in their states, both before and during the pandemic. This session will include discussion on state approaches to improving access to care, addressing the rural/urban divide and improving health systems. Join us as we explore the health disparity challenges facing states and begin to develop strategies for reducing these disparities.Find out more »
Recent research shows the disproportionate impacts of the coronavirus pandemic has had on low-income and minority communities in the U.S. In fact, in addition to individual health outcomes, Black and immigrant populations across the country have been more likely to experience adverse economic impacts as a result of COVID-19 as well. In this session, featured speakers will discuss the disproportionate impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on immigrant communities and the cross-cutting factors that have given rise to these outcomes. It will also seek to explore strategies that state officials can employ to address these disparities through informed policymaking.Find out more »
As a result of COVID-19, states are experiencing severe declines in tax revenue, with projections indicating 5-15% reductions in revenue for fiscal year (FY) 2020 and reductions of 10-25% for FY 2021. A number of states have also been forced to severely cut funding for behavioral health services. Colorado has cut $26 million in funds allocated for behavioral health for FY 2021, while Florida, Georgia and Utah have cut funding for substance use disorder programs. According to the Center for Budget and Policy Priorities, the need for behavioral health care was already high before the pandemic, with deaths from overdose and suicide at near-historic and three-decade highs, respectively. Need has likely only risen since then, given the recent stress and trauma from the public health and economic crises.
This session will explore how state Medicaid programs are addressing need while facing financial realities brought on the pandemic. It will also be an opportunity for state leaders to learn about the CSG Medicaid Policy Academies planned for 2021.Find out more »
The COVID-19 pandemic has brought with it new challenges for corrections in the United States – and exacerbated old ones. Many prison systems were already operating with severe staffing shortages, and these have grown even more urgent as correctional staff contract COVID and are forced to quarantine. Existing prison and jail buildings often fail to provide adequate appropriate room to quarantine the sick and are not wired for e-learning and telemedicine. Meanwhile, the programs and supports that people rely on to make their transitions out of prison and jail more successful have never been needed more. In particular, while employment is a key concern for many who are reentering their communities, jobs are scarce and legal barriers to employment make accessing those jobs that do exist even harder for those with criminal records. State budget shortfalls leave corrections and reentry leaders with tough decisions at a time when their need for resources is significant. In this session, we will discuss strategies and approaches that states are pursuing to control the growth of their prison populations and budgets, support the success of those who are returning to their communities, and ensure public safety.Find out more »
In the last six months, the U.S. Supreme Court has lost one justice and gained another, seen its chief justice take a sharp turn to the left, has had to confront practical and legal challenges related to COVID-19, has completed one blockbuster term and started another, and has been involved in elections litigation. What do these decisions, changes and trends mean for the states? And what changes might be ahead as a new justice joins the bench and the possibility of court reform lurks on the horizon?Find out more »
This session will look at the current status of global trade and how it has been impacted by COVID-19. The pandemic created a historic collapse in global trade, a refocus on supply chains and has reshaped how international trade is conducted. Leaders will discuss the current federal trade agenda, including the implementation of the U.S.–Mexico–Canada Agreement, and how policymakers can assist businesses with international trade and investment opportunities.Find out more »
Innovation Classroom: Counterfeit Medicines and the Importance of Patient Health and Safety during COVID-19
Innovation Classroom session sponsored by Pfizer.
The popularity of shopping online for medicines is growing quickly due to its convenience as well as the current guidance from health authorities for the public to maintain social distance to keep themselves and vulnerable populations safe. While the U.S. has one of the world’s most secure supply chains, there is growing evidence that Americans are increasingly exposed to sources outside of the typical supply chain for medicine. This innovation classroom will provide an overview of counterfeit medicines, how they relate to COVID-19 medicine and vaccines and what can be done about it.Find out more »
Historic amounts of grant funding will flow into states in 2021 to use for pre-disaster mitigation and large infrastructure projects from the Building Resilient Infrastructure and Communities (BRIC) Program through the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). The new BRIC program allows states and local communities to shift from reactive disaster spending and instead take forward-leaning and innovative approaches to building resilience, including public-private partnerships and nature-based solutions. Learn how this unprecedented opportunity can be leveraged to build climate and disaster resilience, reinforce equity and encourage stronger economies.Find out more »