On March 9, 2022, the Vermont Department of Health once again achieved national public health accreditation. The Department was initially accredited in 2014 as one of the first five state health departments to receive the honor.
Accreditation by the Public Health Accreditation Board is a significant achievement. The national accreditation program is jointly supported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. The accreditation process is built on a set rigorous standards against which the nation’s more than 3,000 governmental public health departments can measure the quality of their services and performance.
What Accreditation Means
Public Health accreditation reinforces the role of health departments and partners in delivering the 10 essential public health services. To maintain accreditation, reports are submitted each year after the initial approval, and departments must be reaccredited after five years. The process of continually maintaining the standards of a high functioning health department over the years has strengthened the Health Department’s culture of continuous quality improvement. The robust processes and systems that have been created and maintained over the years were essential in helping the Health Department weather the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Highlights for Vermont
The Public Health Accreditation Board site visit team highlighted some specific areas of excellence from our department:
"The 2018 State Health Assessment (SHA) is an excellent and comprehensive review of Vermont’s health status and the state’s resources to address them. The SHA advisory committee identified many community resources that have been called upon through the State Health Improvement Plan to impact the SHA issues."
"The Health Department’s performance is a transparent process to the public as performance data is available to community partners and the public on their website… Their online data visualization tools are easy to understand and interactive."
"Since Vermont has no non-English language media outlets, the health department's formal contacts in non-English speaking communities, who agree to share urgent information during an emergency, is an exemplary practice."