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Elizabeth Cooney is a health reporter for the Worcester Telegram & Gazette.
Boston Globe Health and Science staff:
Karen Weintraub, Deputy Health and Science Editor, and Gideon Gil, Health and Science Editor.
Short White Coat blogger Ishani Ganguli
Short White Coat blogger Jennifer Srygley
Monday, April 2, 2007
Renewed push underway for flu pandemic money
By Stephen Smith, Globe Staff
A proposal to spend $36.5 million to prepare the state for a long-feared global epidemic of influenza is back before Massachusetts lawmakers, three months after they failed to act on the measure.
The money would be used in large part to buy breathing machines, hospital beds, and caches of flu medication. The legislation, sponsored by Senator Richard T. Moore, resembles a pandemic plan originally championed in February 2006 by then-Governor Mitt Romney.
Moore, an Uxbridge Democrat who is chairman of the Joint Committee on Health Care Financing, also calls in his legislation for spending money to improve the state laboratory, enhance disease tracking systems, and strengthen the ability of local health departments to deal with major health emergencies.
A hearing on the proposal is expected this week.