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    Regional and Local Health Operations
    1100 West 49th Street
    Austin, Texas 78756

    Phone: 512-776-7770
    Fax: 512-776-7590
    Toll-free: 800-248-4083


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Public Health Improvement - Preventive Health and Health Services Block Grant (PHHSBG)

The Preventive Health and Health Services Block Grant (PHHSBG), created in 1981, allocate funds to every state for their use toward any objective outlined in the nation’s public health blueprint titled Healthy People 2020. The grant allows the state to address some of the high priority public health issues as determined by mortality, morbidity, and economic cost data for the state. The program areas funded annually submits a plan stating the public health issue that will be addressed, provide a description of the strategy used to address the public health concern, identify the target population and how the program addresses the targeted population needs, and identify the national and state health status outcome objectives each program will work towards achieving as reflected in Healthy People 2020. Each program outlines activities that support one or more of the ten essential public health services recognized by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Maintaining support for this grant is critical in allowing Texas to focus funds on prevention measures that yield clear benefits in terms of quality of life and savings.

The PHHSBG was funded nationally at $147 million in FY 2017. Texas’ share was $6.3 million of which $562,234 is a mandatory “set-aside” for sexual assault prevention and crisis services that are administered by the Office of the Attorney General

DSHS will utilize the PPHS Block Grant funds to support:

Local Health Departments (LHDs) utilizes funds to provide self-identified gaps in essential public health services.  Using CDC’s definition of essential public health services as a framework, local health departments (LHD) assess which critical areas of their infrastructure in which to apply these funds.  In all cases, services outlined in LHD work plans would not exist in these communities if it were not for the provision of the PHHSBG. The majority of the services include: education and outreach to the community regarding disease prevention and other priority health concerns;  surveillance and monitoring of the community’s health status through disease reporting and investigation;  mobilizing community resources to develop plans around  health issues in their jurisdiction; reviewing local policies to assure that standards are maintained in the provision of health services; and monitoring the public health workforce to ensure federal or state licensure and certification standards are met.  LHDs funded through this grant will be required to identify national, state or local standards to be used to evaluate the activities provided.  Based on quarterly reporting measures, LHDs are required to identify barriers to the provision of services and develop improvement plans that may include new or alternative strategies in order to effectively provide the service(s) outlined in their work plans.

Sexual Assault Prevention & Crisis Services are funded by the Sex Offense allocation, which are provided to the Office of the Attorney General (OAG) through an interagency subcontract. These funds will continue to support sexual assault programs to implement strategies and activities specifically for the primary prevention of sexual violence using any of the following approved activities and community change strategies: educational seminars; training programs for professionals; preparation of informational materials; training programs for students and campus personnel designed to reduce the incidence of sexual assault at colleges and universities; community mobilization; coalition building; and, policy education, and social norms change.  Additionally, the OAG funds state sexual assault coalitions to provide technical assistance and training to sexual assault programs that are implementing primary prevention strategies.

Community and Clinical Preventive Services under the direction of the Division of Community Health Improvement will continue and expand priority activities developed to reduce the impact of obesity and other chronic diseases in the State of Texas by focusing on clinical and community systems-level enhancements. Through subcontracts with up to six local public health organizations, funds will support coordinated, locally-driven approaches to obesity and chronic disease management and prevention. Additionally, through a subcontract with the University of Texas at Austin’s Tobacco Research and Evaluation Team, funds will support a coordinated, statewide approach to tobacco prevention and control. Program strategies include: creating new clinical-community linkages to strengthen referral systems; standardizing clinical quality measures through enhanced health information technology; promoting evidence-based education and training for providers, patients, and the public; and facilitating the integration of electronic protocols and other tobacco cessation referral options into clinical systems. These efforts align with the overall goals of improving the quality of care to improve health outcomes, lower health care costs, and improve population health.

The Texas Healthy Communities Program under the direction of the Division of Community Health Improvement will continue and expand activities which encourage and enable Texas communities to implement evidence based practices to make policy and environmental improvements that reduce the burden of chronic diseases.  Eighteen subcontracts with local health departments will support 20 communities to complete a needs  assessment and to implement evidence-based practices in identified areas of need, which may include the following priority areas: accessible health food options, physical activity areas and opportunities, breastfeeding-friendly worksites, school health programs, worksite wellness programs, comprehensive tobacco control, cardiac and stroke response-healthy aging, and/or promotion of primary and secondary prevention of cardiovascular disease and stroke in healthcare systems.

Last updated February 26, 2021