Top Five Reasons Why Your Health Department Should Apply for Project Public Health Ready Recognition

Project Public Health Ready (PPHR) is a criteria-based training and recognition program created through a cooperate agreement between the National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to help local health departments (LHDs) build their preparedness capacity through a continuous quality improvement model. Here are the top five reasons why your health department should apply for Project Public Health Ready (PPHR) recognition.

  1. Commitment to Preparedness

Achieving PPHR recognition means gaining confidence in your agency’s preparedness capability. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) endorses and recognizes organizations meeting PPHR criteria. In successfully completing the application, LHDs are driven to strengthen partnerships and improve integration within the preparedness community by working with response partners to develop and enhance plans and processes. In addition, it showcases an organization’s competitiveness for recruitment of high-level staff. PPHR recognition certainly creates distinction among other health departments and agencies. With nearly 3,000 LHDs in the county, more than 500 agencies have been PPHR-recognized.

  1. Meeting the Highest Standard

The PPHR criteria is the highest standard of emergency preparedness in the country. LHDs must demonstrate their alignment with federal initiatives including CDC’s public health preparedness capabilities, National Incident Management System (NIMS), the Homeland Security Exercise and Evaluation Program (HSEEP), and the National Health Security Strategy’s Biennial Implementation Plan. In addition, PPHR helps organizations prepare for other high-standard recognition programs (e.g., Public Health Accreditation Board (PHAB), CDC’s Operational Readiness Review (ORR).

  1. Improve Relationships with Partners

Organizations and their staff have always had difficulty with communications and building relationships with partners. The PPHR program encourages applicants to facilitate collaboration and team-building across the entire health department. This then drives an internal continuous quality improvement by building a culture of collaboration among LHD staff, and helping staff become more familiar with emergency preparedness. Outside of the health department, the PPHR program encourages the department to strengthen community, response, and other stakeholder partnerships.

  1. Your Plans Reviewed By Experts

In completing the PPHR application, your plans will be reviewed by experts. In granting access to your plans, you are provided with knowledgeable peers to review and comment on your plan’s functionalities and performances. At the completion of your application process, your department will receive valuable constructive feedback to further benefit your overall planning.

  1. Former Applicants Say So

Don’t just take our word for it, more than 500 LHDs have achieved PPHR recognition. The following feedback illustrates the value of participating in the PPHR program:

“Local health departments should consider applying for PPHR recognition, as it provides a nationally recognized set of standards to assure readiness for response to public health emergencies. PPHR requires collaboration among LHDs and their community partners, which strengthens relationships necessary to ensure a community’s resilience.”–R. Jason marks, emergency preparedness coordinator, Peoria City/County Health Department, a previously recognized department.

“A great reason for getting PPHR recognition is that by following its criteria, you create a benchmark for your current processes and get guidance for future improvements. Information about your current plan and processes help experts create guidance specific to your department.”–Chris H. Garret, local health emergency coordinator, Pittsylvania Danville Health District and Southside Health District, a currently recognized agency.

Ready to apply? Visit our website for more information, or email us at pphr@naccho.org. The deadline to submit an ”Intent to Apply” form is Oct. 31, 2018.

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