Public Health Modernization

The Public Health Modernization concept:

The vision for how public health should support Oregon’s health system in shifting its focus to prevention of disease was outlined in the 2010 Oregon Action Plan for Health:

“We need a health system that integrates public health, health care and community-level health improvement efforts to achieve a high standard of overall health for all Oregonians, regardless of income, race, ethnicity or geographic location. To achieve this, we must stimulate innovation and integration among public health, health systems and communities to increase coordination and reduce duplication.”

  • Public Health Modernization Summary:
    • Everyone in Oregon deserves the opportunity to lead long and healthy lives. Governmental public health supports the achievement of optimal health for all people in Oregon. Public health:
      • Gives communities timely and comprehensive data on the health of their population to inform community health assessments and community health improvement plans;
      • Prepares and assists communities in response to natural disasters and other emergencies;
      • Protects everyone in Oregon from disease threats;
      • Creates communities that ensure access to healthy foods and safe places to play and be active; and
      • Makes sure everyone in Oregon has access to health care providers and preventive health care services and screenings

Oregon Health Authority (OHA) Public Health Modernization website

The Public Health Modernization framework for governmental public health services:

Public health modernization foundational programs and capabilities are present at every health department (

  • Foundational capabilities
    • Leadership and organizational competencies
    • Health equity and cultural responsiveness
    • Community partnership development
    • Assessment and epidemiology
    • Policy and planning
    • Communications
    • Emergency preparedness and response
  • Foundational programs
    • Communicable disease control
    • Prevention and health promotion
    • Environmental services
    • Access to clinical preventive services
  • Additional programs
Public Health Modernization Legislation:
  • House Bill 2348 (2013) created a task force that set recommendation to meet in the years ahead. The task force recommended that:
    • A set of foundational capabilities and programs be adopted to ensure a core set of public health services is available in every area of the state;
    • Significant and sustained state funding be allocated to support implementation of the foundational capabilities and programs;
    • Implementation of the foundational capabilities and programs should occur in waves over a set timeline;
    • Local public health authorities should have the flexibility to determine the best method to implement the foundational capabilities and programs to meet each community’s unique needs;
    • A set of accountability metrics should be developed to ensure improvements and progress toward established goals.
  • House Bill 3100 (2015) operationalized the task force recommendations and established a set of planning activities to be completed during the 2015-2017 biennium.
    • Required changes to increase the efficiency and effectiveness of Oregon’s public health system and ensure a base level of public health services to every person in Oregon.
    • A statewide assessment of public health department capabilities, capacities, and costs was conducted in 2016.
  • House Bill 2310 (2017) further clarified how the foundational capabilities and programs are to be implemented across the public health system.
    • The statewide assessment estimated that the public health system was underfunded by nearly $100 million (if all programs and capabilities were staffed and funded to perform to an optimal level).
    • Public Health Modernization Manual was published in September 2017
  • For the 2017-19 biennium, the Oregon legislature made an initial investment of $5 million for modernizing Oregon’s public health system. The majority of these funds are being used to establish regional communicable disease control programs.
    • In November 2017, OHA awarded grants to eight regional partnerships that will:
      • Develop regional systems for communicable disease control;
      • Emphasize the elimination of communicable disease-related health disparities; and
      • Build sustainable regional infrastructure for new models of public health service delivery.
The Public Health Modernization Work Plan for the South West Regional Health Collaborative (Coos, Curry, and Douglas Counties)
  • SWRHC funded for $468,000 from December 2017 through June of 2019;
  • By January 2018, the leadership team will create a performance management plan;
  • By March 31, 2018, the SWRHC structure, governance and membership will be solidified;
  • By December 2018, a reginal health equity assessment will be conducted and an action plan will be developed;
  • By May 2019, SWRHC will have implemented an improved, and standardized data collection and reporting process for communicable diseases to ensure a regional data driven health equity-oriented communicable disease public health program;
  • By June 2019, SWRHC will identify and develop strategies that will contribute to improving the immunization rates for 2-year olds across the region.

**The South West Regional Health Collaborative meets quarterly at the Bandon Community Health Center in Bandon, Oregon. Prior meeting minutes and information regarding future meetings can be found on the SWRHC page, HERE.**

**The Regional Health Equity Assessment has been completed. A summary of the results can be found: HERE. For the complete report, send a request to the program coordinator at**