The power of this accreditation process lies in its focus on ensuring that our passion and hard work are connected to a solid foundation of community assessment, strategic vision, and clear and measurable goals.” -- Health Officer Matt Kelley
Alexandria, VA (PRWEB) May 15, 2015
Working to protect and improve the health of communities across the nation, the Public Health Accreditation Board (PHAB) today announced it has awarded five-year accreditation status to eight more public health departments. This week’s accreditation decisions add 1.6 million U.S. residents to the growing national network of communities served by health departments that meet national standards for delivering quality programs and services.
PHAB, the nonprofit organization that administers the national public health accreditation program, aims to improve and protect the health of the public by advancing the quality and performance of the nation’s Tribal, state, local, and territorial health departments. Since the launch of the national accreditation program in 2011, 75 health departments have been awarded national accreditation status, bringing the total population now served by a PHAB-accredited health department to more than 114 million. With this week’s decisions, more than half the nation’s states — 27 states plus the District of Columbia —now have at least one accredited health department within their borders.
National accreditation status was awarded May 12, 2015 to:
- Christian County Health Department, Hopkinsville, Kentucky
- Cobb & Douglas Public Health, Marietta, Georgia
- District Health Department #10, Hart, Michigan
- Gallatin City-County Health Department, Bozeman, Montana
- Kitsap Public Health District, Bremerton, Washington
- Lawrence-Douglas County Health Department, Lawrence, Kansas
- Peoria City/County Health Department, Peoria, Illinois
- Taney County Health Department, Branson, Missouri
“One of the greatest things that a health department can do to better serve its community is to provide clear guidance across the health department as a whole,” said PHAB President and CEO Kaye Bender, PhD, RN, FAAN. “Several of the health departments achieving accreditation this week were noted as having good coordination among their community health improvement plans, strategic plans and quality improvement plans. That approach strengthens the entire health department in its mission to improve the conditions in which their public can be healthy.”
Aiming to transform public health in the United States, the national accreditation program sets standards against which the nation’s more than 3,000 public health departments can continuously work to improve the quality of their services and performance. To receive national accreditation, a health department must undergo a rigorous, multi-faceted, peer-reviewed assessment process to ensure it meets or exceeds a set of public health quality standards and measures.
The peer-review process provides valuable feedback to inform health departments of their strengths and areas for improvement so that they can better protect and promote the health of the people in the communities they serve.
PHAB-accredited health departments range in size from small local health departments serving communities of fewer than 50,000 people to large state health departments serving tens of millions. Serving a community of 820,500, Cobb & Douglas Public Health (CDPH) in Marietta, Georgia, this week became the first health department in Georgia to achieve accreditation through PHAB.
“Cobb & Douglas Public Health is honored to become the first local health department in Georgia to receive national accreditation status through the Public Health Accreditation Board,” said District Health Director Jack Kennedy, MD, MBA. “This achievement validates the dedication and hard work of our staff, the extraordinary support of our community partners, and the commitment of our Georgia Department of Public Health to quality improvement. I am very thankful for the recognition of CDPH’s strong commitment to our mission of promoting and protecting the health and safety of the residents of Cobb and Douglas counties.”
Serving a community of 90,000 people, the Gallatin City-County Health Department in Bozeman, Montana, this week became the third health department in Montana to seek and successfully achieve PHAB accreditation.
“This achievement is a testament to the staff and community partners who every day bring passion, talent, and heart to the work we do to improve the health and quality of life in Gallatin County,” said Health Officer Matt Kelley, MPH. “The power of this accreditation process lies in its focus on ensuring that our passion and hard work are connected to a solid foundation of community assessment, strategic vision, and clear and measurable goals.”
Public health departments play a critical role in protecting and improving the health of people and communities. Across the nation, health departments provide a range of services aimed at promoting healthy behaviors; preventing diseases and injuries; ensuring access to safe food, water, clean air, and life-saving immunizations; and preparing for and responding to health emergencies.
For more information, contact Teddi Nicolaus at (703) 778-4549 ext. 118, or email tnicolaus(at)phaboard(dot)org. Learn more about PHAB and accreditation at http://www.phaboard.org.
About the Public Health Accreditation Board
The Public Health Accreditation Board (PHAB) was created to serve as the national public health accrediting body and is jointly funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. The development of national public health accreditation has involved, and is supported by, public health leaders and practitioners from the national, tribal, state, local, and territorial levels. Learn more about PHAB or sign up for the PHAB e-newsletter by visiting http://www.phaboard.org.