At a Glance
  • State Population: 6,770,010
  • Local Health Departments: 95
  • Frequent Public Health Emergencies: Tornadoes, Flooding, Chemical Hazmat
  • Key Emergency Operations Center Activations: 2018-2019: Hepatitis A Outbreak; 2019: East Tennessee Measles Outbreak
  • CDC PHEP Funding:
    FY 2017: $11,145,736
    FY 2018: $11,145,736
    FY 2019: $11,198,104
PHEP-Funded Staff
  • Epidemiologists: 18
  • Laboratorian: 9
  • Educator: 1
  • Health Professionals: 10
  • CDC Preparedness Field Staff: 2
  • Other*: 43

*Includes IT specialists, administrative staff, statisticians, and other positions

Top 5 Preparedness Investments
  1. Public Health Surveillance and Epidemiologic Investigation
  2. Public Health Laboratory Testing
  3. Community Recovery
  4. Medical Surge
  5. Mass Care
Stories from the Field
Tennessee Opioids
PHEP Program Brings Tennessee’s Opioid Overdose Epidemic under Control

In Tennessee, PHEP supports a CDC field scientist who works with local staff to improve surveillance, strengthen outbreak response, and conduct epidemiologic investigations. In 2017, Tennessee recorded 1,268 deaths related to opioid overdoses. The CDC scientist, alongside local staff, collected and analyzed data from multiple sources to understand the nature of the epidemic, and developed a report. Known as the Opioid Outbreak Strategic Map, the report outlines actions to increase public education, identify problematic prescribing patterns, and strengthen collaboration with law enforcement. This report helped coordinate the efforts of all invested in stopping opioid deaths and created a path for moving forward.

Tennessee Opioids
Responding to a Devastating Wildfire

When a destructive wildfire spread through Gatlinburg in late 2016 and disabled all forms of communication in the city, the state, regional, and local health departments deployed four PHEP-funded mobile communications centers to the affected areas. These were outfitted with satellite phones and satellite internet access. For the duration of the response, all communications were funneled through the mobile communications centers, including all communications between emergency medical services, hospitals, public health, medical examiner, and emergency management. This PHEP-funded asset ensured that life-saving work could continue during a dangerous and unpredictable emergency.

Page last reviewed: March 16, 2020, 03:35 PM