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New Orleans Health Department Receives Second National Accreditation Status, Perfect Score

NEW ORLEANS — The City of New Orleans Health Department (NOHD) today announced it has successfully completed an exhaustive process to maintain national Accreditation status for an additional five years through the Public Health Accreditation Board (PHAB). NOHD received its initial Accreditation status in 2014 and was one of the first 50 health departments in the U.S. to do so. The Reaccreditation process took several years of preparation and work by NOHD staff, and the Department received perfect scores on all measured domains. In maintaining its Accreditation status for another five years, NOHD has demonstrated that it not only meets PHAB’s quality standards and measures but equitably serves the health needs of the Greater New Orleans area with tremendous professionalism and dedication.

“Before taking office, I, along with my transition team, designated the New Orleans Health Department as a priority for this administration, and this focus even led to the creation of the City’s first Office of Youth and Families,” said Mayor LaToya Cantrell. “Our increased investments in NOHD over the last three years have enabled this department to improve the health and safety of our residents and become national leaders of testing and vaccinations through the COVID-19 pandemic. This recognition is another great result of those investments and the hard work of this department.”

“The mission of NOHD is to protect, promote, and preserve the health and well-being of all in our community,” said Dr. Jennifer Avegno, NOHD Director. “Every one of our staff contributes daily to the success of Health Department programs, and their compassionate and tireless efforts are reflected in this achievement. We see this as a foundation to continue to serve our residents with best practices and innovative new approaches to improving health.”

Currently, fewer than 15% of health departments nationwide have achieved Reaccreditation status. NOHD accomplished this goal after undergoing a rigorous, multi-faceted, peer-reviewed assessment process to ensure it met PHAB standards, while also coordinating a citywide response to the COVID-19 pandemic. NOHD operates numerous direct service programs and initiatives city-wide, both independently and with multiple community partners. Most recently, NOHD has led the City of New Orleans’ prevention and response efforts to COVID-19, saving countless lives and creating disease/pandemic prevention strategies that will serve New Orleans into the future.

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.

“We are extremely pleased to be at the point in the Accreditation program where the New Orleans Health Department, 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. This Accreditation is a testament to that work, along with the numerous programs and services NOHD provides for the New Orleans community.

About the Public Health Accreditation Board
The Public Health Accreditation Board (PHAB) was created to serve as the national public health accrediting body and is jointly funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. The development of national public health department accreditation has involved, and is supported by, public health leaders and practitioners from the national, state, local, Tribal, and territorial levels. For more information, contact PHAB Communications Manager Janalle Goosby at jgoosby@phaboard.org. Learn more about PHAB and accreditation at www.phaboard.org, and by signing up for the PHAB e-newsletter.

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