Media contact: Emily Gresham Wherle, Public Information Administrator, 859.344.5470 or Emily.Gresham-Wherle@nkyhealth.org.
Monday, March 4, 2013
Public Health Accreditation Board designation recognizes high-performing health departments
Edgewood, Ky. – The Northern Kentucky Health Department is proud to announce that it has achieved national accreditation through the Public Health Accreditation Board. Northern Kentucky was one of the first 11 health departments across the country to be granted accreditation through PHAB, the independent organization that administers the national public health accreditation program. Three health departments in Kentucky were among the first group to be accredited: Northern Kentucky Health Department, Three Rivers District Health Department (covering Carroll, Gallatin, Owen and Pendleton Counties); and Franklin County Health Department (which includes the city of Frankfort).
To achieve accreditation status, the Health Department had to undergo a rigorous, multi-faceted, peer-reviewed assessment process. It had to assure that it is providing the 10 Essential Public Health Services, and demonstrate that the agency supports efforts for quality improvement.
“Northern Kentucky has a top-notch health department, and being among the first in the nation to achieve accreditation is a testament to the quality of services that we provide,” said Lynne M. Saddler, MD, MPH, District Director of Health. “The accreditation process helps to ensure that the programs and services we offer are responsive to the needs of our community. With accreditation, the Health Department is demonstrating increased accountability and credibility to the public, funders, elected officials and partner organizations with which we work; as well as working to achieve our vision of being a national leader in public health.”
The national accreditation program works to improve and protect the health of the public by advancing the quality and performance of the nation’s state, local, tribal and territorial public health departments. The program, jointly supported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, sets standards against which the nation’s more than 3,000 governmental public health departments can continuously improve the quality of their services and performance.
“The Health Department plays a critical role in protecting and improving the health of Northern Kentucky,” said Saddler. “We promote healthy behaviors; prevent diseases and injuries; ensure access to safe food, water, clean air, and life-saving immunizations; and prepare for and respond to public health emergencies.”
The national accreditation program was created collaboratively over a 10-year period by hundreds of public health practitioners. Since the program’s launch in September 2011, more than 100 health departments have applied to PHAB for accreditation, and hundreds of public health practitioners from across the nation have been trained to serve as peer site visitors for the program.
“The Northern Kentucky Health Department is one of the first of many health departments that we look forward to being able to recognize as a high-performing public health department,” 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.”
For more information about the Northern Kentucky Health Department’s accreditation efforts, please see the attached questions and answers document or visit http://www.nkyhealth.org/acreditation. For more information about national public health accreditation, please visit http://www.phaboard.org
About the Northern Kentucky Health Department
With a mission of “Promoting and protecting the health of Northern Kentucky by providing public health services essential for a safe and healthy community,” the Northern Kentucky Health Department provides public health services to a four-county region located across the Ohio River from Cincinnati. It offers community assessment and surveillance, public health policy development, and the assurance of the essential public health services in the community.
About the Public Health Accreditation Board
The Public Health Accreditation Board, established in 2007, 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, and local levels. Learn more about PHAB or sign up for the PHAB e-newsletter by visiting www.phaboard.org.
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Media representatives should contact Emily Gresham Wherle at 859.344.5470 or Emily.Gresham-Wherle@nkyhealth.org, about any request or information before calling any other Health Department employee. Your calls and requests will be handled expediently with your deadlines in mind. Thank you for your interest and support in educating the community about public health issues.
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