PUBLIC HEALTH INFRASTRUCTURE IN OHIO
The public health system in Ohio is comprised of the Ohio Department of Health, 113 local health departments, health care providers, and public health stakeholders that work together to promote and protect the health of all Ohioans.
Local health departments, like school districts, maintain independent governance, but often work together, along with the state and federal public health agencies. Depending on the type of health district (county or city jurisdiction), funding comes from the support of their community through levies, city general operating funds, contracts, county government, and inside millage. To help support local health departments, ODH receives funds from federal agencies, state general revenue, and other sources and distributes many of these funds through contracts and grants that contribute toward public health programs and services. ODH also provides technical support, laboratory services, and other critical services to aid local health department efforts.
Local health departments strive to protect and improve the health of their communities by preventing and controlling the spread of disease and injury, protecting against environmental hazards, promoting and supporting healthy behaviors, and preparing for and responding to emergencies.
Services that may be provided by a local health department include access to birth and death records, health education, immunization clinics, well-baby visits, pre-natal, health screenings, dental, disease surveillance and other services and programs. Local health departments administer core environmental health programs such as inspections related to food safety, public swimming pools, campgrounds, sewage, and water, as well as other environmental programs such as smoking, lead and asthma. Ohio residents and businesses are encouraged to contact their local health department regarding environmental health concerns. Click here for a comprehensive search tool, to locate your local health department by address.
Local Health Departments are governed by regulations in the Ohio Revised Code (ORC) and the Ohio Administrative Code.
- Ohio Revised Code Chapter 3701: DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH
- Ohio Administrative Code Chapter 3701-36: LOCAL HEALTH DEPARTMENTS
- Ohio Revised Code: Chapter 3705: VITAL STATISTICS
- Ohio Revised Code: Chapter 3707: BOARD OF HEALTH
- Ohio Revised Code Chapter 3709: HEALTH DISTRICTS
- Ohio Revised Code: Chapter 4736: SANITARIANS
To find out more about governance structures across the nation, please go to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Governance Health Structures.
Multi-sector partnerships play an increasingly significant role in the movement to improve heath, equity, and economic prosperity. These partnerships recognize that many of our most pressing challenges defy sector boundaries, and cannot be effectively addressed by any one institution alone –ReThink Health, The Rippel Foundation.
Ohio Public Health Partnership
The Ohio Association of Boards of Health has been a member of the Ohio Public Health Partnership since its 2005 development. The mission of the Ohio Public Health Partnership (OPHP) is to promote and strengthen public health through a sustained partnership of Ohio’s public health associations, serving as experts, advocates and leaders. OPHP provides a united, efficient, effective and sustained relationship among member public health organizations.
Ohio Public Health Advisory Board
The Ohio Association of Boards of Health has been a member of the Ohio Public Health Advisory Board since its creation by the Ohio legislature in 2012 and OABH’s Jerry Lupfer currently chairs the Advisory Board. The OPHAB was created as an eleven-member board Ohio public Health Advisory Board (OPHAB), for the purpose of reviewing and making recommendations to the Director of Health
Ohio Public Health Association
The Ohio Public Health Association (OPHA) is Ohio’s professional association for all those who work in or support the various fields of Public Health. OPHA is the Ohio affiliate of the American Public Health Association (APHA).
National Association of Local Boards of Health
The National Association of Local Boards of Health (NALBOH) informs, guides, and serves as the national voice for boards of health. In today’s public health system, the leadership role of boards of health makes them an essential link between public health services and a healthy community. Uniquely positioned to deliver technical expertise in governance and leadership, board development, health priorities, and public health policy, NALBOH strives to strengthen good governance where public health begins—at the local level.
State Association for Local Boards of Health
OABH also serves as the State Association for Local Boards of Health (SALBOH) of NALBOH. SALBOHs are a vital part of the NALBOH membership and network. They are Affiliate members of NALBOH and an important link between NALBOH and local boards of health from their states.
NACCHO comprises nearly 3,000 local health departments across the United States and focuses on being a leader, partner, catalyst, and voice for change for local health departments around the nation.
The Ohio Association of Boards of Health participates in NACCHO’s Annual Hill Day through its SALBOH partnership. On March 13, 2019 members of NACCHO’s Board of Directors, the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials (ASTHO), the state associations of county and city health officials (SACCHOs), the Big Cities Health Coalition (BCHC), and the National Association of Local Boards of Health (NALBOH)/SALBOH were on Capitol Hill on speaking about the importance of the governmental public health system. Ohio’s advocacy included meetings with staff from the offices of Senator Sherrod Brown (D – OH), Senator Rob Portman (R – OH), and Representative Brad Wenstrup (R- OH 2nd Congressional District).