Laying the Groundwork for Evidence-Based Public Health: Why Some Local Health Departments Use More Evidence-Based Decision-Making Practices Than Others

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American Public Health Association




We examined variation in the use of evidence-based decision-making (EBDM) practices across local health departments (LHDs) in the United States and the extent to which this variation was predicted by resources, personnel, and governance. We analyzed data from the National Association of County and City Health Officials Profile of Local Health Departments, the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials State Health Departments Profile, and the US Census using 2-level multilevel regression models. We found more workforce predictors than resource predictors. Thus, although resources are related to LHDs’ use of EBDM practices, the way resources are used (e.g., the types and qualifications of personnel hired) may be more important.