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San Juan Basin Health Department honored

As local health departments nationwide strive to protect the public from infectious diseases, bioterrorism, natural disasters and other public health threats, the National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO) has recognized San Juan Basin Health Department for its ability to respond to public health emergencies.

San Juan Basin Health met the comprehensive preparedness benchmarks required to be recognized by Project Public Health Ready (PPHR), a unique partnership between NACCHO and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Local health departments recognized by PPHR undergo a rigorous evaluation. PPHR recognition confirms that San Juan Basin Health Department has a thorough coordinated emergency response plan, that staff members are trained, and that the agency exercises the plan and uses it during public health emergencies.

“We are proud to have been recognized by Project Public Health Ready for our high level of preparedness,” said Joe Theine, San Juan Basin Health Department’s director. “We will continue to improve our ability to quickly and effectively respond to any public health crisis in Archuleta and La Plata counties.

“This community is a leader in emergency preparedness—in public health, in public and fire safety and in other disciplines. Still, the most important factor in determining whether we succeed in responding to an emergency will be the actions of our citizens in advance planning, cooperating with authorities and helping each other in a time of duress.”

“NACCHO commends San Juan Basin Health Department for being a model of public health emergency preparedness,” said Robert Pestronk, executive director of NACCHO. “The public health system is making great strides thanks to the good work of leaders in local public health preparedness such as San Juan Basin Health.”

The mission of the National Association of County and City Health Officials is to be a leader, partner, catalyst and voice for local health departments in order to ensure the conditions that promote health and equity, combat disease and improve the quality and length of all lives.

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

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