The Seattle Times is reporting on major possible budget cuts within Public Health. The layoffs and cuts have the potential to greatly impact Columbia City’s Public Health office (at Genessee):
Budget cuts are nothing new to local public health departments, but this time it’s different, Dr. David Fleming told his staff at Public Health — Seattle & King County on Thursday.
Facing a shortfall of $15 million per year for the next two years, Public Health is proposing to close up to four of its 10 public health clinics, said Fleming, director and public health officer. The clinics provide family planning, and maternity and infant support services for patients with income, language, social or mental difficulties who have trouble getting help elsewhere.
For 200 to 300 workers, layoffs loom, as do cuts to key efforts to prevent communicable diseases and chronic conditions, Fleming said in interviews this week.
For now, change is most likely to occur for patients at clinics in Seattle’s Northgate and Columbia City neighborhoods. There, primary care and some other services may shift to a private provider. In addition, four other clinics may close.