The Public Health Accreditation Board (PHAB) announced today that it has awarded five-year accreditation status to Olmsted County Public Health Services (OCPHS). PHAB is the nonprofit organization dedicated to improving and protecting the health of the public by advancing and ultimately transforming the quality and performance of state, local, Tribal, and territorial public health departments. The national accreditation program sets standards towards which the nation’s nearly 3,000 governmental public health departments can continuously work to improve the quality of their services and their performance, by promoting consistency across departments.
Since PHAB's launch in September 2011, only 6 local public health agencies in Minnesota and the Minnesota Department of Health have achieved five-year accreditation status. OCPHS is the only local public health agency in the state outside of the metro area to achieve PHAB accreditation.
“We are pleased and excited to be recognized for achieving national standards that foster effectiveness and promote continuous quality improvement,” said Pete Giesen, Director of Olmsted County Public Health Services. “The accreditation process helps to ensure that the programs and services we provide are as responsive as possible to the needs of our community. Accreditation verifies that we have all the pieces in place, and can demonstrate accountability and credibility to the public, funders, elected officials and partner organizations with which we work.”
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, water, clean air, and life-saving immunizations; and preparing for and responding to public health emergencies.
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 system must undergo a rigorous, multi-faceted, peer-reviewed assessment process to ensure it meets or exceeds a set of quality standards and measures.