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State, Tribal, Local, & Territorial Support

A core CDC responsibility is to help state, tribal, local, and territorial health departments prepare for and respond to emerging health threats where they happen. We provide public health authorities with information, tools, staff, and training. We support state and local actions to promote health and protect people in their communities. We help public health departments to improve performance, share resources, and identify and respond quickly to challenges in the evolving public health system.

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CDC has 862 field staff working in state, tribal, local, and territorial health agencies and other organizations.

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325 public health projects currently build state, tribal, local, and territorial capacity through cooperative agreements with 25 national grantees.

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The Public Health Law Program conducted 14 webinars and 44 in-person trainings across the U.S., training more than 4,652 professionals on public health law issues.

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About 39% of the U.S. population, or 121 million people, are served by 79 nationally accredited health departments.

Key Accomplishments 2015

  • Increased workforce capacity with the largest class in the history of the Public Health Associate Program. Now 332 trained associates serve state, tribal, local, territorial, federal, and nongovernmental public health organizations across 44 states, one territory, and the District of Columbia through this 2-year program.
  • Funded five tribes through the Tribal Public Health Accreditation Support Initiative (January – June 2015) to increase their progress toward obtaining accreditation.
  • Published a School Vaccination Laws report that analyzed state statutes and regulations for school vaccines. Since its launch in April 2015, the corresponding web page has received nearly 18,000 site views, and the report was downloaded more than 8,500 times.
  • Helped launch CDC’s social determinants of health website so health departments and communities can increase understanding and access tools that address the underlying systems and environmental, social, and economic conditions that affect health.
  • Hosted 2015 CDC New Health Official Orientation for 13 state and seven local health officials to give new officials a comprehensive perspective of CDC’s mission and the opportunity to form relationships with CDC and other partners.

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Rebuilding a Public Health System

Most people think of the U.S. Virgin Islands as a tropical paradise. But when Kenneth Mapp took office as the territory’s governor, he realized the tropical paradise had a serious public health challenge.

“Our Department of Health remains severely understaffed and underfunded,” Governor Mapp said in his inaugural address. “Chronic diseases, including diabetes, hypertension and kidney failure, have been on the rise in the territory.”

Mapp turned to a host of partners, including CDC, to advise him on how to strengthen public health in the Virgin Islands. CDC organized a multidisciplinary team to identify real-world solutions for the territory. The result is a strategic plan to cultivate a skilled public health workforce, identify new approaches to maximize available resources, improve health promotion and prevention strategies, and gather health data to inform policy decisions.

St Croix, US Virgin Islands

St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands


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