PHAB Health Department Seal

The Iowa Department of Public Health received national accreditation status from the Public Health Accreditation Board (PHAB) on November 20, 2018. PHAB is the national accrediting body for state, local and Tribal public health departments. Iowa HHS approaches accreditation work as an effort in quality improvement through the use of national best practices as defined by PHAB’s standards and measures. Version 2022 of the PHAB standards aligns with the Ten Essential Public Health Services as well the Foundational Public Health Services.

Iowa HHS is currently preparing to apply for reaccreditation in late 2024. In addition to working on reaccreditation, Iowa HHS is available to provide technical assistance to local and Tribal agencies on their accreditation journeys. It is recommended that Iowa’s local health departments use the PHAB standards even if not currently seeking accreditation. Use of the PHAB standards will bring more consistency to public health service delivery across our state. Meeting standards and achieved accredited status signifies the role public health plays in assuring a healthy Iowa.

Department leadership have identified several benefits of accreditation work including:

  • the ability to hone in on specific opportunities to improve,
  • providing a mechanism for important cross-department conversations,
  • raising the importance of documenting our work,
  • the embedding of workforce development, quality improvement, communication, performance management and health equity in our work.

For more information about national accreditation, visit

Key documents necessary for the accreditation process include:

  • State Health Assessment
  • State Health Improvement Plan
  • Strategic Plan
  • Workforce Development Plan
  • Performance Improvement Plan