3188.0: Monday, November 13, 2000 - 5:05 PM

Abstract #10711

Assessing local health departments

Richard A. Wissell, DrPH, Department of Public Health, East Tennessee State University, P.O. Box 70674, Johnson City, TN 37614-0674, 423-439-4332, wissell@etsu.edu

Based on the history of interest by APHA, the Institute of Medicine and others in states having program standards for local health departments, during 1999 the author conducted a mail survey of the 50 states to determine what kind of standards the states had for local health departments as well as if the states had a program for certification or accreditation of local health departments. This survey revealed most of the reporting states having program standards for local health departments and a few having an accreditation or certification program for local health departments.

The National Public Health Performance Standards Program has identified ten "Essential Services of Public Health". The Institute of Medicine 1988 report "The Future of Public Health" identified three core functions of public health. Is it appropriate for states to evaluate local health departments based on the core functions, programs or services? This question has been posed to leaders of public health academia; federal, state and local agencies; and public health organizations from around the nation using a modified Delphi technique. Results will be discussed and, if consensus can be reached by presentation time, a suggested approach will be presented.

Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of this session the participant will be able to: 1. Discuss which states have developed various types of standards for local health departments. 2. Identify the states that have an accreditation or certification program for local health departments. 3. Describe the consensus of public health leaders from all walks of life all over the United States regarding the use of functions, programs or services as evaluators of local health departments. 4. Articulate to their state suggestions for implementation of an evaluation system for local health departments

Keywords: Assessments, Public Health Infrastructure

Presenting author's disclosure statement:
Organization/institution whose products or services will be discussed: None
I do not have any significant financial interest/arrangement or affiliation with any organization/institution whose products or services are being discussed in this session.

The 128th Annual Meeting of APHA