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Kannapolis, NC– Cabarrus Health Alliance (CHA) 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. CHA 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. CHA joins a cohort of 500 local health departments across the country that have been distinguished for excellence in preparedness through PPHR, either individually or as part of a region. "I’ve been a Project Public Health Ready reviewer for NACCHO for many years and understand the tremendous amount of work required to receive this designation. Once again, CHA and its partners are leading public health in North Carolina" shared Dr. William Pilkington, CEO and Public Health Director at CHA.
PPHR recognition confirms that CHA 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. In February 2017, CHA staff coordinated a mass prophylaxis exercise with local partners: Concord Emergency Management, Fire, and Police; Cabarrus County Emergency Management, Sheriff, and EMS; Kannapolis Police; Crossroads Church; Cabarrus College of Health Sciences; and the Red Cross. The exercise tested our plans to give medicine to 1000 people in an emergency.
"When disaster strikes, it affects local communities, and local health departments are a critical part of any first response to disease outbreaks, emergencies, and acts of terrorism," said Dr. William Barnes, Interim Executive Director & Chief Program Officer. "NACCHO commends CHA for being a model of public health emergency preparedness."
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.
Cabarrus Health Alliance is the public health authority of Cabarrus County. Cabarrus Health Alliance is an autonomous organization and provider of services and programs designed to meet the needs of public health. Cabarrus Health Alliance is a leader in public health and nationally recognized for its innovation.
For more information on Project Public Health Ready, including recognized sites, project tools, and resources, visit http://www.naccho.org/PPHR .