PHAB E-Newsletter header
Call for Workgroup Members
Need a Speaker?
Question Corner
Save the Date!
Archived Webcast
SER Update




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This issue of PHAB's e-newsletter includes information on the upcoming public comment period for draft accreditation standards, details on how you can be involved in PHAB and a new feature to answer your questions about accreditation.  We wish you a wonderful holiday season and look forward to our continued work together in the New Year!
Please continue to check the PHAB Web site ( often for news and updates.
William Riley, PhD
Interim Executive Director
Public Health Accreditation Board

Colleagues ImageGet Involved! Call for Workgroup Members
PHAB is seeking members for the new Fees & Incentives Workgroup. This Workgroup will develop a fee structure for national accreditation applicants and identify strategies for securing incentives for program participation. The Workgroup will run from January 2009-March 2011. If you would like to be considered, or to nominate a colleague, contact Jeff Neistadt at Letters of interest and CVs are due to Jeff by Friday, December 19th. Decisions will be made in January 2009.

Looking for a Speaker on National Accreditation?

Many health departments are sharing information about accreditation with their staff, funders and other partners. To assist with information dissemination and engagement, PHAB is now 'on the road!' PHAB's Workgroup Members, Board of Directors Members and staff are available and prepared to lead discussions about the development of the program with potential applicants or interested parties. If you have an upcoming meeting or conference and would like to request a speaker, contact Jeff Neistadt at or (419)353-7714.
Question markQuestion Corner: Credentialing versus National Accreditation 
PHAB is committed to communicatin updates and information about the development of the accreditation program, and a Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) piece has been developed to capture the answers. The latest question is:
What is the difference between public health accreditation and public health credentialing?
Both credentialing and accreditation efforts are active in the public health community right now.  Accreditation is a voluntary program that measures the degree to which state, local, tribal, and territorial public health departments meet nationally recognized standards and measures. Credentialing is a process that measures the knowledge and skills of individuals with graduate level degrees in public health. The National Board of Public Health Examiners (NBPHE) was established in September 2005 as an independent organization and administers a voluntary certification exam for students and graduates of approved public health schools and programs. Visit the National Board of Public Health Examiners Web site for more information on credentialing:
Additional FAQs appear on the PHAB Web site, and will be continually updated to address emerging topics.  If you have questions for PHAB, submit them online at PHAB wants to hear from you!

Save the Date! Draft Standards to be Released February 2009

The draft standards for state, local and territorial health department accreditation will be released for public comment and vetting in February 2009. (PHAB will develop tribal standards). The standards will be available for review through April 2009, and the standards will be revised based on the feedback received. If you would like a PHAB representative to facilitate a standards conversation between February and April, e-mail Jeff Neistadt at More details about the standards vetting process will be available on the PHAB Web site.


Archived PHAB Webcast on National Accreditation 

computerOn December 15th, PHAB hosted a free webcast on the development of the national accreditation program, and provided information on when the first draft standards will be available for public review. William Riley, the PHAB Interim Executive Director, led the webcast and took questions from the audience. More than 375 people participated! If you would like to view or share the webcast, it is available to view online at Check the PHAB Calendar for upcoming events.

Substantial Equivalency Recognition Update

The Board of Directors is committed to addressing the recommendation from the Exploring Accreditation Steering Committee that a national program should complement state-based efforts to establish performance standards for public health departments.  Moreover, state-based accreditation (and related) programs have furthered PHAB's goal of improving the quality and performance of health departments, and their experiences continue to inform PHAB's development.
Substantial equivalency recognition (SER), the ability of different systems to meet the same standards, denotes a local health department accredited by a PHAB approved state-based public health accreditation program as equivalent to PHAB accreditation.  The Board of Directors will engage in an in-depth discussion about PHAB's SER policy during its January meeting.  A final policy will be issued after the Board has had a "listening session" with existing state-based accreditation programs, in order to answer questions and also identify any issues that have not been adequately addressed.  Additional information about the listening session will be publicized in January.