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On July 20, 1999, Governor Thomas R. Carper signed Senate Bill 8 (SB 8) into law, authored by Sen. Patricia M. Blevins. SB 8 created the Delaware Health Fund, a special fund comprising all annual payments received pursuant to the Master Settlement Agreement entered into by the State of Delaware and the Participating Tobacco Manufacturers. In addition, SB 8 established the Delaware Health Fund Advisory Committee (DHFAC) to make recommendations consistent with the purposes of the fund outlined in SB 8, to the Governor and the General Assembly for appropriating monies expected to be received in the next fiscal year. These purposes are:

  • Expanding access to health care and health insurance for citizens of Delaware that lack affordable health care due to being uninsured or under insured;
  • Making long-term investments to enhance health care infrastructure which meets a public purpose;
  • Promoting healthy lifestyles, including the prevention and cessation of the use of tobacco, alcohol and other drugs by the citizens of Delaware;
  • Promoting preventive care for Delawareans in order to detect and avoid adverse health conditions, particularly cancer and other tobacco-related diseases;
  • Working with the medical community by providing funding for innovative and/or cost effective testing regimens to detect and identify lessor-known but devastating and costly illnesses, such as sarcoidosis and hemachromatosis, fibromyalgia, lupus, lyme disease and chronic fatigue immune deficiency syndrome;
  • Promoting a payment assistance program for Delaware's citizens who suffer from debilitating chronic illnesses, such as diabetes and kidney disease, which are characterized by recurring costs for equipment, tests, and therapy; and/or
  • Such other expenditures as are deemed necessary in the best interest of the citizens of Delaware provided they shall be made for health related purposes.