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Accreditation Preparation

National Accreditation Spotlight: Hand writingLocal health departments (LHDs) have different technical assistance needs based on their level of accreditation readiness. While some are just beginning to learn about the Public Health Accreditation Board's (PHAB's) national, voluntary accreditation program, others may be just about ready to apply. Listed below are key steps in the accreditation preparation process which LHDs must undertake prior to the PHAB application proccess. Determine which phase in the accreditation preparation process your LHD is in and visit the listed websites to access resources that will answer your questions and streamline your efforts as you pursue accreditation. Please note that these steps do not have to be completed in this order. Each LHD must choose what works best for them.

To view a document containing a list of NACCHO's resources as they appear on this website, click here.

To view a document containing a joint list of NACCHO's and ASTHO's resources, click here.

Learn About PHAB and Accreditation
To successfully achieve accreditation, it is important for leadership to understand the requirements and commit to the process first. To learn about accreditation and determine readiness to apply, these resources offer answers to everything a health director may need to know when considering accreditation, including the process requirements, costs, and benefits. Behind this link are informational presentations and webinars, frequently asked questions, and PHAB’s readiness checklists.

Interested health departments can also find out about the journeys of other health departments pursuing accreditation or receiving funding to improve their readiness. More »

Complete Accreditation Prerequisites
To be eligible to apply for accreditation an LHD must have a completed community health assessment, community health improvement plan, and agency strategic plan (must be dated within five years of the time of application). Behind this link are examples of completed prerequisites, templates, and guidance documents. More »
Form an Accreditation Preparation Team
To undertake the accreditation process, the health director must appoint an accreditation coordinator to oversee the process. An accreditation preparation team should be formed and, depending on the LHD size and structure, consist of any combination of senior management, management, program staff, and frontline staff. Behind this link are resources to orient staff to accreditation and guidance on how to form a multidisciplinary accreditation team. More »
Collect and Organize Documentation
Each LHD must demonstrate compliance with PHAB standards and measures by collecting and submitting documentation. The formation of an accreditation preparation team and the collection and electronic organization of documentation should begin in advance of submitting the PHAB application. Behind this link are guidance documents, trainings, relevant PHAB materials, examples of documentation, and LHD lessons learned around organizing for accreditation. More »
Engage Local Governing Entity
To be eligible for accreditation, an LHD’s local governing entity (LGE) must sign a letter of support for the LHD to pursue accreditation. Additionally, Domain 12 of the PHAB standards relates to engaging the LGE, making it important to involve it in the accreditation preparation process. Behind this link are trainings and podcasts for orienting LGEs. More »
Budget for Costs and Fees
Costs for preparing for accreditation generally fall into three categories: the accreditation fees, staff time to support the process, and the costs of doing business (reflected in the creation of documentation, etc.). Behind this link are PHAB’s fee schedule, answers to frequently asked questions regarding accreditation costs and fees, and resources for finding accreditation preparation funding. More »
Engage in Quality Improvement
The PHAB program is intended to be a platform for quality improvement (QI). Domain 9 for the PHAB standards relates to QI activities in an LHD. Additionally, to maintain accreditation status, an LHD must demonstrate to PHAB that it is continuously improving. Behind this link are trainings for staff, QI presentations and webinars, QI case examples, QI guidebooks, and much more. More »
Apply for PHAB Accreditation
Once an LHD has determined it is feasible to apply and completed all the preliminary accreditation preparation efforts listed above, it is ready to submit a letter of intent to PHAB and begin the actual PHAB application process. Behind this link is a list of available resources. More »
Research and Publications
Behind this link are accreditation and quality improvement related research and publications. More »

Please note that the lists of resources on this website is not exhaustive and additional resources are available. E-mail to find additional resources or with general questions.