OKLAHOMA CITY (Sept. 30, 2020) – The Oklahoma State Department of Health (OSDH) announced today it has successfully completed a review process to maintain national accreditation status through the Public Health Accreditation Board (PHAB), and highlighted nine key public health outcomes the agency track as a primary focus through 2025.
The nonprofit PHAB works to improve and protect the health of the public by advancing and transforming the quality and performance of governmental public health agencies in the U.S. and abroad. In maintaining its accreditation status for another five years, OSDH has demonstrated that it meets PHAB’s quality standards and measures and has the capacity to continue to evolve, improve and advance, thereby becoming increasingly effective at improving the health of Oklahomans.
“We are so pleased to again be recognized by PHAB for achieving national standards that foster effectiveness and promote continuous quality improvement," Oklahoma Health Commissioner Lance Frye, M.D. said. “We hope this announcement, coming as it does in the midst of our rapidly unfolding public health response to the COVID-19 pandemic, will reassure Oklahomans, our partner organizations, and our elected officials, that the services we provide are as responsive as possible to the needs of our community.”
PHAB’s accreditation program – which receives support from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation – sets standards against which the nation’s governmental public health departments can continuously improve the quality of their services and performance.
OSDH achieved national initial accreditation status through PHAB in February 2013, after undergoing a rigorous, multi-faceted, peer-reviewed assessment process to ensure it met a set of quality standards and measures. Today’s announcement goes a step further by demonstrating that the OSDH has the capacity to become increasingly effective at improving the health of the Oklahomans.
As part of the accreditation process, OSDH has identified nine key public health outcomes to focus on for the next five-year period, including:
Reduce adolescent smoking prevalence for high school-aged youth
Reduce adolescent e-cigarette use prevalence for high school-aged youth
Reduce adult smoking prevalence
Reduce adolescent obesity prevalence
Reduce adult obesity prevalence
Decrease the three-year average rate of infant deaths
Reduce the severe maternal morbidity rate
Decrease the age-adjusted rate of unintentional injury death
Decrease the age-adjusted rate of intentional injury death
"We are extremely pleased to be at the point in the accreditation program where the Oklahoma State Department of Health, along with many others, are successfully maintaining their five-year
accreditation status through PHAB,” said PHAB President and CEO Paul Kuehnert, DNP, RN, FAAN. “In so doing, these health departments are assuring their communities that the value of accreditation is long-term -- not a one-time recognition -- and that continual improvement is the hallmark of a 21st century organization.”
Often called the “backbone” of the public health system, public health departments are on the front lines of communities’ efforts to protect and promote health and prevent disease and injury. PHAB-accredited health departments demonstrate great leadership by placing their work for peer review, with the goal of using the feedback obtained during the process to improve the services they provide to their communities.
“We applaud the Oklahoma State Department of Health for demonstrating its increasing effectiveness in improving the health of everyone in Oklahoma, said Joe Finkbonner, RPh, MHA, chair of PHAB’s Board of Directors. “By maintaining their accreditation through PHAB, people living and working in Oklahoma can rest assured that the OSDH is strong, has been carefully examined, and has the capacity to protect and promote the health of everyone in the community.”