Rappahannock Area Health District Protects its Community Through National “Public Health Ready” Recognition Program

January 23, 2017

For More Information Contact

  • Lorrie Andrew-Spear, VDH Public Information Officer – 703-530-2627

Fredericksburg, Va. – Rappahannock Area Health District (RAHD) 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. RAHD 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. RAHD joins a cohort of more than 450 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 proud to have been recognized by Project Public Health Ready for our dedication to public health emergency preparedness and response,” said RAHD Health Director, Dr. Brooke Rossheim. “We will continue to improve our ability to quickly and effectively respond to any public health crisis in the communities we serve.”

PPHR recognition confirms that RAHD 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.

“This honor is a testament to the tremendous effort, dedication, creativity, and cooperation of our entire staff,” said Rossheim. “In addition, our success in this endeavor would not have been possible without the vital relationships we have forged with our volunteers, hospital and health care partners, state and local governments and agencies, non-profit organizations, community minded businesses and our residents.”

PPHR recognition also requires health departments to develop emergency preparedness and response plans that account for all the constituents in their jurisdictions during a crisis.

“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. LaMar Hasbrouck, NACCHO executive director. “NACCHO commends Rappahannock Area Health District 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 policies and programs to ensure that communities have access to vital programs and services to protect them from disease and disaster.

RAHD provides medical, environmental, and public health services to residents of the City of Fredericksburg and Caroline, King George, Spotsylvania and Stafford counties in Virginia. Visit www.vdh.virginia.gov/rappahannock/ for more information.

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