About Environmental Health Services

The Water, Food, and Environmental Health Services Branch (EHS) provides practice-based research, training, tools and guidance. Learn Why Environmental Health Services Are So Important.

Learn about our EHS activities for environmental health practitioners and programs serving states, tribes, localities, and territories:

Safe Water

  • Funds state and local health departments to improve safe drinking water programs (Safe Water for Community Health).
  • Addresses health risks in building plumbing systems (Legionella) and public pools, waterparks, and pools and hot tubs/spas in hotels, apartment complexes, and neighborhoods (Model Aquatic Health Code).

Image of a hand cupped getting water.

Food Safety

  • Funds studies on food safety in restaurants and recommends food safety practices to reduce foodborne illness and outbreaks (Environmental Health Specialists Network).
  • Conducts training and surveillance on the environmental causes of foodborne illness outbreaks (National Environmental Assessment Reporting System and Environmental Assessment Training Series).

Photo of gloved hands chopping a cucumber.

Environmental Health Practice

  • Builds environmental health program capacity to detect, prevent, and control environmental health hazards through data-driven, evidence-based approaches.
  • Helps environmental health programs use data to address environmental hazards and improve services.

People working together to build a puzzle.

Vessel Sanitation Program

  • Helps the cruise ship industry prevent and control the spread of gastrointestinal illnesses on cruise ships through a model fee-based program.
  • Conducts periodic, unannounced operational sanitation inspections.
  • Monitors gastrointestinal illnesses and investigates outbreaks.

Family with young girl on pool deck.

The Water, Food, and Environmental Health Services Branch is part of the National Center for Environmental Health’s Division of Environmental Health Science and Practice.

Page last reviewed: July 10, 2020