Fort Bend County has accepted a $2.87 million grant to be used through November 2027 for its public health infrastructure and workforce development.

At an April 11 meeting, commissioners accepted the grant from the Texas Department of State Health Services. The funds were made available through a $3.95 billion multicomponent grant provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The CDC grant program will provide funding for workforce development, foundational capabilities, data modernization, and technical assistance and training over the next five years.
A $2.87 million grant from the Texas Department of State Health Services aims to stimulate the county's workforce development and encourage representation between public health staff and the populations they serve. (Courtesy Fort Bend County Health and Human Services)
The investment is to better prepare the nation’s public health systems for emergencies, such as COVID-19, and to meet the evolving and complex needs of the communities and populations they serve, according to grant documents.

Per the contract between the county and the state, required activities for grantees include:
  • Recruiting and hiring new public health personnel—such as professional, clinical, disease investigation, program or administrative staff
  • Creating new positions
  • Improving hiring incentives
  • Retaining staff and creating promotional opportunities
  • Addressing the workforce’s mental, emotional and physical well-being
  • Maintaining and upgrading human resource systems
  • Identifying ways to better collect and use workforce data
  • Identifying policies that could facilitate more efficient and effective workplace development and management
Per the grant agreement, Fort Bend County is required to recruit, hire and retain public health personnel in an effort to ensure preparedness for public health emergencies, such as COVID-19. (Courtesy Fort Bend County Health and Human Services)
Per the same contract, Fort Bend County must prioritize hiring staff who are from the communities and populations it serves to demonstrate a commitment to diversity, health disparities, inclusion and accessibility in its workforce recruitment and selection process, communication and outcomes.