The Public Health Accreditation Board (PHAB) awarded five-year accreditation status earlier this week to nine public health departments across the country. The national public health accrediting body is jointly funded by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. A total of 31 state and local public health departments have achieved the accreditation status. Those awarded March 19 included:

  • Columbus Public Health, Columbus, OH
  • Cook County Department of Public Health, Oak Forest, IL
  • Delaware General Health District, Delaware, OH
  • Hennepin County Human Services and Public Health Department, Minneapolis, MN
  • Loudoun Health District, Leesburg, VA
  • Marion County Health Department, Salem, OR
  • Missoula City-County Health Department, Missoula, MT
  • Oneida County Health Department, Rhinelander, WI
  • Tooele County Health Department, Tooele, UT

“Nine more health departments have demonstrated their commitment to ongoing performance management and quality improvement, and we are so pleased to confer accreditation on them to recognize those efforts,” said PHAB President and CEO Kaye Bender, PhD, RN, FAAN. “We are excited because with these accreditations, we have added five new states — Minnesota, Montana, Oregon, Utah, and Virginia — to the growing ranks of states with at least one nationally accredited health department.” Sixteen states across the nation now boast at least one nationally accredited health department, including Colorado, 1; Illinois, 3; Kentucky, 3; Michigan, 1; Minnesota, 1; Missouri, 1; Montana, 1; New York, 1; North Carolina, 1; Ohio, 4; Oklahoma, 4; Oregon, 1; Utah, 1; Virginia, 1; Washington, 2; and Wisconsin, 5. PHAB-accredited health departments range in size from small health departments serving communities of 37,000 to those serving large metropolitan areas of millions. Hundreds of health departments are currently preparing to seek national accreditation through the program, which launched in September 2011 after more than a decade in development. 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.