The State Hygienic Laboratory (SHL) is established in the Iowa Administrative Code to provide the following services, public health and environmental testing and surveillance, food safety testing and surveillance, chemical and bioterrorism response, newborn screening and testing, education and training, and applied research. Key partners include the Iowa Department of Public Health, the Iowa Department of Natural Resources, hospitals and clinical labs throughout the state and region, and university researchers. SHL serves all 99 Iowa counties, in addition to providing services from clients throughout the nation. The overall budget is $24.4 million (increase largely due to New CDC Biomonitoring grant), with the state portion comprising approximately $6.7 million, or 27.5% of the overall budget.
FY 2021 projected revenue is $6,684,829
State appropriation – 72%
Fee for service testing – 27%
Indirect cost recovery – less than 1%
Interest – less than 0.1%
The FY 2021 state appropriation ($4,822,610) is unchanged from last year. SHL’s appropriation had previously been unchanged since FY 2014.
FY 2021 budget dollars will fund laboratory support and administrative functions, infrastructure, supplies, and services.
Salaries: Salaries comprise 79% of the laboratory expenses. Clinical faculty and P&S staff will receive a 2.1% salary increase in FY 2021. Merit staff will receive the 2.1% contractual increase.
Supplies, Services, and Rentals: These expenses constitute 21% of SHL’s budget. They include reagents and consumables, service contracts, laboratory software, services, the statewide courier, and DAS leased space for the Ankeny facility.
CHALLENGES AND STRATEGIES
Obtaining funding continues to be a primary concern for SHL. Funding from all sources has not kept pace with increasing costs for staff benefits, reagents, and other supplies. Recruiting and retaining staff as we move to a high through-put laboratory is critical. Furthermore, a key strategy is for SHL to move to an updated LIMS system and obtain new instrumentations to increase testing capacity.
SHL is making multiple efforts to improve its financial position despite the funding challenges. SHL continues to work on opportunities for supply cost reduction and revenue enhancement for both fee-for-service testing and increased collaborative grant funding support.