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The Florida Department of Health works to protect, promote & improve the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county, & community efforts.

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DOH-COLLIER PROTECTS COLLIER COUNTY RESIDENTS FROM EMERGENCIES AND DISASTERS THROUGH NATIONAL “PUBLIC HEALTH READY” RECOGNITION PROGRAM

By Jeff Welle

July 07, 2015

Naples - The Department of Health in Collier County (DOH-Collier) has been recognized by the National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO) for its ability to plan for, respond to, and recover from public health emergencies. DOH-Collier demonstrated these capabilities by meeting the comprehensive preparedness benchmarks required by Project Public Health Ready (PPHR), a unique partnership between NACCHO and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. DOH-Collier joins a cohort of more than 400 local health departments across the country that have been distinguished for excellence in preparedness through PPHR, either individually or as part of a region.

“We are honored to have been recognized by Project Public Health Ready for our high level of preparedness.” said DOH Collier Administrator, Stephanie Vick. “Local health departments are a critical part of any community’s first response to emergencies, disease outbreaks, or acts of terrorism. Our public health staff trains year-round to make certain we are always prepared to respond to an emergency. We will continue to improve our ability to respond quickly and effectively to any public health crisis, keeping the residents and visitors of Collier County safe, which is our organization’s top priority.”

PPHR recognition confirms that DOH-Collier has a thorough and coordinated emergency response plan in place and that staff have the training to protect the health of the community during an emergency. Local health departments recognized by PPHR undergo a rigorous evaluation by peer review to assess their ability to meet a set of national standards for public health preparedness. These standards align with federal government requirements and other national best practices.

PPHR recognition also requires health departments to collaborate with their state, local, and community partners to develop plans that account for all the constituents in their jurisdictions. As an example, DOH-Collier is an executive member of, and was a primary lead in establishing, the Collier Healthcare Emergency Preparedness Coalition (CHEPC), which provides a forum for the healthcare community and response agencies at the local level to interact with one another and promote emergency preparedness. This improves the county’s overall readiness and resiliency through coordination of community-wide training and exercises.

NACCHO, the voice of the 2,800 local health departments across the country, provides resources to help local health department leaders develop public health policies and programs to ensure that communities have access to vital programs and services that people need to keep them protected from disease and disaster. Its mission is to be a leader, partner, catalyst, and voice for local health departments in order to ensure the conditions that promote health and equity, combat disease, and improve the quality and length of all lives.

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DOH protects, promotes and improves the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county and community efforts.

Follow us on Twitter at @HealthyFla and on Facebook. For more information about the Florida Department of Health please visit www.floridahealth.gov.

For more information on Project Public Health Ready, including recognized sites, project tools, and resources, visit http://www.naccho.org/PPHR .