LOCAL PUBLIC HEALTH DEPT. SEEKS NATIONAL ACCREDITATION
Becoming an accredited Public Health Department is something fairly new.
"Hospitals have been accredited for a number of years, but public health entities have not," Humboldt County Public Health Program Manager Mike Goldsby said.
Goldsby said the first step in applying to accreditation is putting together a Community Health Assessment. The second step is to develop a Community Health Improvement Plan off the assessment’s findings.
"Everything from nutrition, physical activity, causes of premature death, all those sorts of things," he said.
Goldsby points out that accreditation wouldn’t directly bring in any extra funding, but it potentially could.
"In the future fund-ers will look at is this and say, ‘is this an accredited public entity,’ and we want to be able to say ‘yes.’"
So far only eleven public health departments in the nation are accredited.
"Once this starts going, this will be a process that is kept alive and is renewed every five years as a part of Public Health Accreditation."
Goldsby said the plan is to apply by the end of summer after the Community Health Improvement Plan is in place.
"Accreditation is important in Humboldt County and nationwide to have some uniformity between public entities and how they address the health of their community."