Presentation Title

Variations in Public Health Governance: A Typology of Local Boards of Health

Location

Atrium

Session Format

Poster Presentation

Research Area Topic:

Public Health & Well Being - Quality Improvement/Recession Impact

Abstract

Introduction:

Studies of public health departments report mixed results regarding the relevance of governance through local boards of health (LBOHs). These studies find LBOHs can be an important component in higher performance by local health departments. Other analyses, however, find no significance for local health departments having or not having a LBOH.

Hypothesis:

Can a typology of LBOHs nationwide define different types of LBOHs based on their powers and responsibilities?

Methods:

Using national profile sample data from the National Association of Local Boards of Health (NALBOH), we categorized LBOHs using 33 variables based on four domains of responsibilities and duties: enforcement powers, regulatory powers, human resource powers, and budgetary powers. We then computed correlations between types of LBOHs defined by this typology and whether they shared any significant characteristics in terms of the race, ethnicity, sex, and educational demographics of their board members. We also used arcGIS to spatially analyze the data for regional and national patterns.

Results:

LBOHs vary considerably across the country from LBOHs with no budgetary, enforcement, regulatory, or human resources authorities to ones who have all four.

Conclusion:

Different types of LBOHs may have very different influences on their associated local board of health. This study provides a typology for future research to allow analysts to distinguish different types of LBOHs nationally.

Keywords

Local boards of health, Health departments, Health quality, Powers of local boards of health

Presentation Type and Release Option

Presentation (Open Access)

Start Date

4-24-2015 2:45 PM

End Date

4-24-2015 4:00 PM

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Apr 24th, 2:45 PM Apr 24th, 4:00 PM

Variations in Public Health Governance: A Typology of Local Boards of Health

Atrium

Introduction:

Studies of public health departments report mixed results regarding the relevance of governance through local boards of health (LBOHs). These studies find LBOHs can be an important component in higher performance by local health departments. Other analyses, however, find no significance for local health departments having or not having a LBOH.

Hypothesis:

Can a typology of LBOHs nationwide define different types of LBOHs based on their powers and responsibilities?

Methods:

Using national profile sample data from the National Association of Local Boards of Health (NALBOH), we categorized LBOHs using 33 variables based on four domains of responsibilities and duties: enforcement powers, regulatory powers, human resource powers, and budgetary powers. We then computed correlations between types of LBOHs defined by this typology and whether they shared any significant characteristics in terms of the race, ethnicity, sex, and educational demographics of their board members. We also used arcGIS to spatially analyze the data for regional and national patterns.

Results:

LBOHs vary considerably across the country from LBOHs with no budgetary, enforcement, regulatory, or human resources authorities to ones who have all four.

Conclusion:

Different types of LBOHs may have very different influences on their associated local board of health. This study provides a typology for future research to allow analysts to distinguish different types of LBOHs nationally.