The Drexel study identified significant gaps in the coordination of public health services, and some critical deficits in current environmental and personal health services. The key findings from the surveys and resident interviews emphasized several recurring concerns about the current condition of public health:
Findings from the study recommend a public health department in Lancaster County should be no larger than necessary to meet Pennsylvania Department of Health regulations and identified essential community needs. The study also recommended a public health department should:
Four Years of Exploration
In February 2007, the Board of Commissioners requested and received a Certificate of Approval from the PA Department of Health, granting the county permission to establish a county health department, if it so chose. However, with a change in members of the Board and the subsequent downturn of the economy, establishing a department was no longer an option for the County.
The Steering Committee was challenged to search for other ways of addressing the gaps in delivery of public health services. Using the momentum already in force and strong community interest, the concept of a private/public partnership emerged, with the hope that someday the effort to create a county department could resume.
The attached documents [see Related Content] make the case for the creation of a county public health department and include a plan for a unique department customized for Lancaster that builds on existing strengths and adds capacity to fill identified gaps in service.
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Certificate of Approval
The Plan: Lancaster County Public Health
Steering Committee Members
Public Health Services in Pennsylvania