Health Department achieves national accreditation


By Eddie Mowen Jr. - emowen@civitasmedia.com



EATON — Preble County Public Health recently announced it has achieved national accreditation through the Public Health Accreditation Board (PHAB).

The national accreditation program works to improve and protect the health of the public by advancing and ultimately transforming the quality and performance of the nation’s state, local, tribal, and territorial public health departments, according to officials.

Preble County Public Health is one of fewer than 200 health departments in the United States to have achieved accreditation through PHAB since the organization launched in 2011.

“We are pleased and excited to be recognized for achieving national standards that foster effectiveness and promote continuous quality improvement,” said Erik Balster, Health Commissioner, of the Preble County Public Health.

“The accreditation process helps to ensure that the Public Health programs and services we provide are as responsive as possible to the needs of our community. With accreditation, Preble County Public Health is demonstrating increased accountability and credibility to the people we serve here in Preble County.”

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.

“Whenever you see our seal of accreditation, you will know that Preble County Public Health has been rigorously examined and meets or exceeds national standards that promote continuous quality improvement for public health,” Balster said.

“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.”

“Whether you received a flu shot at our immunization clinic, requested a copy of your birth certificate or had lunch at a local restaurant, Public Health had an important impact on your life and all others who live, work, and play in Preble County,” Balster added in a press release last week.

He continued: “The services provided by the health department are broad and include inspection of restaurants, swimming pools, and the water you drink. Equally important, are services provided without a fee, to all individuals regardless of income or insurance status. These services include communicable/infectious disease investigations, emergency preparedness and nuisance complaint investigations. Additionally, our clinics provide prenatal and reproductive health services, as well as education to children and parents about nutrition, lifestyles, and activity.”

“Preble 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.”

The national accreditation program was created collaboratively over a 10-year period by hundreds of public health practitioners working at the national, tribal, state, and local levels. Since the program’s launch in September 2011, hundreds of public health departments have applied to PHAB for accreditation, and hundreds of public health practitioners from across the nation have been trained to serve as volunteer peer site visitors for the program.

By Eddie Mowen Jr.

emowen@civitasmedia.com

Reach Eddie Mowen Jr. at 937-683-4056 or on Twitter @emowen_RH.

Reach Eddie Mowen Jr. at 937-683-4056 or on Twitter @emowen_RH.

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