Public Health Accreditation
Public Health Accreditation is a voluntary national program developed to measure health department performance against an established set of nationally recognized, practice-focused, and evidenced-based standards. Public Health Accreditation is overseen by the Public Health Accreditation Board (PHAB) and jointly supported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Accreditation required the close inspection of our core programs, policies, and processes to ensure that they not only met the standards set by PHAB, but that we continuously work to improve how we deliver Public Health to everyone who lives, learns, works, or plays in Howard County.
HCHD was accredited on August 21, 2019. Accredited status lasts for 5 years and requires annual progress reports to ensure continuous program and process improvement. A list of the state, local and tribal health departments who have achieved accreditation or reaccreditation nationwide is available on the Public Health Accreditation Board Who Is Accredited page.
PHAB Domains and the Ten Essential Public Health Services
PHAB’s public health department accreditation domains are aligned to the Ten Essential Public Health Services (EPHS) framework. Equity is at the center of this framework to actively promote policies, systems, and overall community conditions that enable optimal health for all. Public health department accreditation standards address a range of core public health programs and activities including, for example, environmental public health, health education, health promotion, community health, chronic disease prevention and control, infectious disease, injury prevention, maternal and child health, public health emergency preparedness, access to clinical services, public health laboratory services, vital records and health statistics, management/administration, and governance. Thus, public health department accreditation gives reasonable assurance of the range of public health services that a health department should provide. (From PHAB Standards and Measures for Accreditation Version 2022)
Public Health Accreditation Board
The Public Health Accreditation Board showcases the benefits Public Health Accreditation brings to health departments and the communities they serve through the following two videos:
The accreditation assessment process provides valuable, measurable feedback to health departments on their strengths and areas for improvement.
A recent report summarizes data collected to assess the impacts of accreditation: