Accreditation puts performance management into Peoria City/County Health Department’s best-practice toolkit
BY NICOLE INGOLD, BA
Peoria City/County Health Department (PCCHD) officially became accredited on May 12, 2015. The real work obviously started years before that. Our accreditation journey was a long one, however the endeavor has been worth the effort for our health department and the community. We started our journey with the hope of finding best practices and learning new, improved and innovative ways to conduct public health activities and provide services. One best practice area was to create a performance management plan for the agency.
Performance management is now embedded in PCCHD’s culture. Each program area develops a performance management plan for the year. The goals are national standards and align with our overall vision and mission for the agency. Each quarter, staff review and evaluate their programs’ progress and need for quality improvement. These findings are reported to our Board of Health, which identified performance management within their strategic plan goals. The addition of a performance management plan for the agency has helped each program area set and achieve goals and objectives that are timely, monitored, and evaluated.
In addition to the success of our performance management plan, we have seen several other changes in the health department since our journey to accreditation began. For example, we developed a branding policy to ensure that our logo and information we present to the community is consistent. We have also experienced an increase in the use of data analysis for addressing reproductive health issues. This has led to policy changes within the Peoria Public School District. Another benefit we have experienced is the sharing of information with other local and state health departments that are in the accreditation process. We have been fortunate to participate in a local accreditation group in Illinois and a national accreditation group. These groups have been instrumental in sharing information, new policies, and best practices in human resources, environmental health, and infectious disease.
At PCCHD, we continue to benefit from being accredited and look forward to seeing what the future holds as we continue to follow best practices and enhance performance for the community.
The author is Public Health Programs Manager at Peoria City/County Health Department in Peoria, Illinois. The health department was awarded national accreditation by the Public Health Accreditation Board on May 12, 2015.
About “Accreditation Works”
“Accreditation Works” showcases the benefits national accreditation brings to public health departments and communities while also providing insight into accreditation’s broad impact. To support this feature, PHAB-accredited health departments are invited to contribute 300-to-500-word narratives describing how their health department has changed as a result of going through the accreditation process. Collectively, these stories serve as first-hand testimonies of how PHAB accreditation benefits health departments and their communities. Submissions may be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org.