Tri-County Health nears its end: Adams, Arapahoe to form their own health departments

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Tri-County Health Department

ADAMS COUNTY, Colo. (KDVR) — Adams County plans to leave the Tri-County Health Department and make its own after Douglas County moved to do the same, leaving Arapahoe County forced to form its own department, as well.

The Adams County Commissioners announced Tuesday that it will bring a resolution on the county’s intent to leave at an Oct. 26 public hearing.

“Douglas County’s decisions left us no choice but to reevaluate the future of public health services in Adams County,” Adams County Commissioner and Board Chair Eva J. Henry said in a press release. “As a result, Adams County must determine the best option to move ahead for a health board and services provided to residents.”

Adams County said it’s legally required to remain part of TCHD through December 2022. A new Adams County health department is expected by January 2023.

The county said residential services will not be disrupted during the transition.

TCHD included Adams, Arapahoe and Douglas Counties. After 55 years as part of the public health partnership, Douglas County formed its own health department because it disagreed with COVID-19 health orders, like mask mandates. TCHD will provide most public health services for Douglas County through 2022, and the new Douglas County Board of Health will make its own public health policy until then.

The Arapahoe County Board of Commissioners released a statement, saying the board “is saddened that our neighboring counties have chosen to end the productive 55-year partnership with the Tri-County Health Department.

“Arapahoe County residents will continue to receive all existing Tri-County public health services uninterrupted during the transition,” the Arapahoe board said in a press release. “We have already begun to explore future options to continue delivering quality public health services and will begin developing the necessary transition plans as we form our own public health department.”

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