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The Springfield-Greene County Health Department is proud to announce that it has been nationally accredited through the Public Health Accreditation Board.
The years-long process was rigorous and thorough in its peer review of SGCHD through 12 domains of public health excellence, which included such topics as effectiveness in public health preparedness, enforcement of public health laws and ordinances, and community engagement to address public health issues.
“We are pleased and excited to be recognized for what we’ve always felt to be true—that we have a public health system that is second-to-none,” said Director of Health Clay Goddard. “The accreditation process helps to ensure that the programs and services we provide are as responsive as possible to the needs of our community. With accreditation, we are demonstrating increased accountability and credibility to the public, elected officials and partners with which we work.”
SGCHD is one of just over 200 health departments that have thus far achieved accreditation through the Public Health Accreditation Board (PHAB) since the organization launched in 2011. However, hundreds of health departments across the country are preparing to seek accreditation through PHAB, the non-profit organization that administers the national public health accreditation program.
PHAB, 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.
“The Springfield-Greene County Health Department 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 accreditation process resulted in several key efforts that seek to further improve the health of our community, including the Regional Health Assessment and the ongoing Community Mental Health and Substance Abuse Assessment.
“The accreditation process gave us an opportunity to step back from our day-to-day operations and look intently at what we do, how we do it, and why,” Goddard said. “This process has confirmed that we are leading the way in public health performance, but also challenged us to continue to improve.”
Public health departments play a critical role in protecting and improving the health of people and communities. In cities, towns, and states across the nation, health departments provide a range of services aimed at promoting healthy behaviors; preventing diseases and injuries; ensuring access to safe food and life-saving immunizations; and preparing for and responding to public health emergencies.