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Boston — The Massachusetts Department of Public Health (DPH) has been awarded national accreditation status by the Public Health Accreditation Board (PHAB). While DPH’s four state hospitals, its public health infectious disease laboratory and several of its programs have been nationally accredited, the designation marks the first time since the existence of the national accreditation program that the entire Department is nationally accredited.
"The work of the Department of Public Health is critical to the overall health of the Commonwealth," said Executive Office of Health and Human Services Secretary Marylou Sudders. "In addition to providing oversight of a wide range of healthcare-related professions and services, the Department works to prevent epidemics, respond to disasters, protect against environmental hazards, injury and preventable disease and deaths."
PHAB is a non-profit, non-governmental organization that has administered the national public health accreditation program since it was launched in 2011. PHAB is jointly supported by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. The program aims to improve and protect the health of the public by advancing and ultimately transforming the quality and performance of the nation’s state, Tribal, local, and territorial public health departments.
"What makes this national accreditation special and unique is it recognizes the sum of our work as a state public health department," said Public Health Commissioner Monica Bharel, MD, MPH. "It is a stamp of approval that signals to the state and the nation that our programs and services represent the gold standard for public health departments."
To receive national accreditation, DPH had to undergo a rigorous, multi-faceted peer-review assessment process that met PHAB’s national standards for delivering high-quality programs and services to the community. The accreditation process took place over three years, involved a site visit, and more than 16,000 pages of documentation to demonstrate the ways in which the Department provides essential public health services.
DPH promotes the health and well-being of all residents in the Commonwealth by ensuring access to high-quality public health and health care services, and by focusing on prevention, wellness and health equity in all people.