Hamilton County Public Health is First Health District in Southwestern Ohio to Reach Milestone of National Accreditation
Hamilton County, OH…….. Hamilton County Public Health (HCPH) has achieved accreditation from the national Public Health Accreditation Board (PHAB).
The national accreditation program, jointly supported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, sets standards against which the nation’s nearly 3,000 governmental public health departments can continuously improve the quality of their services and performance. To receive accreditation, a health department must undergo a rigorous, multi-faceted, peer-reviewed assessment process to ensure it meets or exceeds a set of quality standards and measures. HCPH is one of fewer than 200 health departments that have thus far achieved accreditation through PHAB since the organization launched in 2011.
“We are thrilled to have achieved accreditation designation,” according to Hamilton County Health Commissioner, Tim Ingram. “The recognition is a testament to the work we do every day, and to the staff that performs it. Throughout the process, we submitted more than 350 supporting documents and received a visit from a PHAB team that reviewed our entire application with our staff,” Ingram says.
For HCPH, the process began more than three years ago with the development of a Community Health Assessment. Findings from this process led to a Community Health Improvement Plan and a strategic plan for the agency, both of which served as the foundation for moving through accreditation.
The State of Ohio announced that all local health departments are to achieve accreditation by year 2020. Not only does accreditation further elevate the performance of protecting public health throughout the State, but also serves as a precedent to receiving increased funding from Ohio and national public health resources.
“We recognized the importance of getting on-board with public health accreditation early in the process,” Ingram says. “Whenever you see our seal of accreditation, you will know that Hamilton County Public Health has been rigorously examined and meets or exceeds national standards that promote continuous quality improvement for public health. By continuing to improve our services and performance, we can be sure we are meeting the public health needs of those we serve as effectively as possible,” Ingram continues.
“Hamilton County Public Health joins the growing ranks of accredited health departments in a strong commitment to their public health mission,” said PHAB President and CEO Kaye Bender, PhD, RN, FAAN. “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 they serve in their communities. Residents of a community served by a nationally accredited health department can be assured that their health department has demonstrated the capacity to protect and promote the health of that community.”
Public Health Accreditation designation lasts for five years, after which the health department must re-apply and complete the process again. “While we’ll celebrate our designation for a few days, accreditation does not allow us to rest on our laurels,” Ingram says. “Accreditation is an on-going process and will continually challenge us to become an even better health resource for our community.”
Hamilton County Public Health works to assure the 480,000 citizens living outside the cities of Cincinnati, Norwood and Springdale are safe from disease, injury
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Posted by: Christy Cauley