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PLAINFIELD, Ind. – The Governor’s Public Health Commission has wrapped up its statewide listening tour as it works to try to improve Indiana’s public health system.

Gov. Eric Holcomb created the commission last year. It’s working to issue a report with recommendations to the state by the end of the summer.

The commission spent the last few weeks touring Indiana to gather public input. Dozens turned out for the final session of the listening tour Thursday in Plainfield.

“There’s always that worry about the dirty bomb or a biological terrorism agent,” said Mary Kay Foster, special pathogens program manager for IU Health.

Preparedness, programs and personnel were just some of the topics discussed as the commission heard from Hoosiers, including local health leaders.

“What kind of delays are happening in public health programming because there’s a delay in getting paperwork?” said Jason Grisell, president and CEO of The Health Foundation of Greater Indianapolis.

“We need to direct funding not just to shiny new buildings – I need the horses to pull the cart,” said Dr. Jeff Qualls, health officer for Johnson County.

“The things that we do and the things that we need, I think we’ve heard echoed across the state,” said Mindy Waldron, administrator for the Allen County Department of Health.

Waldron, who serves on the commission, said she deals with many of those challenges firsthand through her work in Allen County.

Finding more sustainable forms of funding and strengthening the public health workforce are two of the biggest issues health leaders have raised throughout the listening tour, she said.

“We’ve seen I think over these last two years the importance of a robust public health delivery system and that it’s ready, sustained and trained,” Waldron said.