Public Health Preparedness
The Connecticut Department of Public Health, Operations Branch, directly controls the activities of the State of Connecticut Emergency Credentialing Program for Healthcare Professionals through the Office of Public Health Preparedness and the Hospital Preparedness Program Coordinator. The Connecticut Department of Public Health (DPH) is the lead administrative and planning agency for public health initiatives, including public health emergency preparedness. DPH works with federal, state, regional, and local partners to improve the state’s ability to respond in emergencies. The Connecticut Public Health Emergency Response Plan (CT PHERP) identifies DPH response activities during a public health emergency. This plan serves as the Emergency Support Function (ESF) #8 – Public Health and Medical Services component of the state’s disaster and emergency operations plans. To view Connecticut’s Public Health Emergency Response Plan, go to http://www.ct.gov/dph/lib/dph/php/planning/pherp_base_plan.pdf.
Public Health Description
In Connecticut, ultimate responsibility for the overall protection of the public health falls with the Commissioner of Public Health. The Commissioner has authority over local health directors. He/she is required to assist and advise local health departments (LHDs) in the performance of their duties and may require the enforcement of any law, regulation or ordinance relating to public health.

The Local Health Administration Branch (LHAB) serves as the primary interface between the Department and local health directors. In working to assure effective collaboration and partnership with LHDs, the LHAB is the principle Department entity that is responsible for the relationship with LHDs. You can contact the LHAB by calling (860) 509-7660 or E-mailing the Department's Webmaster at webmaster.dph@po.state.ct.us.

Currently, Connecticut has 75 health departments serving the state's entire population, 50 of which are fulltime and 25 of which are part-time. The full-time departments include 29 individual municipal health departments and 21 health district departments (containing from two to 18 towns). Full-time health departments serve approximately 3,326,803 people or 95% of the State's population.

Local health departments (LHDs) are critical providers of population-based essential public health services at the local level in Connecticut. These departments are governmental entities separate from DPH, but are linked by statute in several important ways: approval of appointments of directors of health by the Commissioner of Public Health; mandates to carry out critical public health functions in the areas of infectious disease control in the community, environmental health, etc.; legal authority to levy fines and penalties for public health code violations, and to grant and rescind license permits (such as for food services establishments or septic systems); and funding to carry out the full array of public health activities to improve the health of people in their jurisdictions. Municipal health authorities and districts must include in their responsibilities the enforcement of the state public health code as required by DPH.
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