August 22, 2013

Chicago Department of Public Health Becomes the Largest Local Health Department Accredited by the Public Health Accreditation Administration

Becomes First Accredited Health Department in Illinois

CHICAGO - The Chicago Department of Public Health has achieved national accreditation through the Public Health Accreditation Board (PHAB) and is the largest local health department to achieve such an accomplishment to date and the first accredited health department in Illinois. 

"The Public Health Accreditation Board congratulates the Chicago Department of Public Health on achieving national accreditation.  Serving 2.7 million people, it is the first large local health department to achieve national public health department accreditation," said PHAB President and CEO Kaye Bender.  "In demonstrating conformity with PHAB's accreditation standards, CDPH has affirmed its commitment to protecting and promoting the health of the population it serves."

"This is an important achievement and recognition that highlights the city of Chicago's ongoing commitment to health and wellness on the part of all of our residents," Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel said. "We are focused on policies that will help all Chicagoans and their families enjoy the highest quality of life. We will continue to strive to make Chicago one of the healthiest cities in the world."

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 more than 3,000 governmental public health departments can continuously improve the quality of their services and performance. To receive accreditation, a health department must undergo a rigorous, multi-faceted, peer-reviewed assessment process to ensure it meets or exceeds a set of quality standards and measures.

"CDPH strives to be a leader in public health," said CDPH Commissioner Bechara Choucair, M.D.  "By committing to pursue accreditation, CDPH leadership wanted to ensure that the department meets or exceeds national standards.  We also wanted to send a clear message about the importance of accountability and quality improvement.  This monumental achievement is a culmination of hard work from our staff, our community partners and support from Mayor Emanuel."

In addition, CDPH's national accreditation status means that it is the first accredited health department in Illinois. 

"The Illinois Department of Public Health would like to congratulate the Chicago Department of Public Health for achieving voluntary national accreditation status," said IDPH Director Dr. LaMar Hasbrouck.  "The state health department is in the process of becoming accredited and looks forward to joining the ranks of Chicago and other accredited health departments across the country.  We look forward to working with the newly accredited Chicago Department of Public Health in providing better health services for the public."

IDPH is supportive of all counties' efforts towards accreditation and has created an accreditation tracker,, to monitor statewide progress. 

PHAB's national accreditation program was created collaboratively over a 10-year period by hundreds of public health practitioners working at the national, tribal, state and local levels.  Since the program's launch in September 2011, nearly 130 health departments have applied to PHAB for accreditation and hundreds of public health practitioners from across the nation have been trained to serve as volunteer peer site visitors for the program.

CDPH's public health agenda, Healthy Chicago, has an ambitious sense of purpose for Chicago and includes bold actions and goal-driven results.  With an end goal to make Chicago the healthiest city in the nation, Healthy Chicago outlines 12 health priorities that CDPH and its community partners collectively address to improve the health and well-being of all Chicagoans.

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