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A case study of the 2018 Allegheny County Health Department core competency assessment

Moffa, David (2019) A case study of the 2018 Allegheny County Health Department core competency assessment. Master Essay, University of Pittsburgh.

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Maintaining a competent and qualified public health workforce is crucial to delivering the Ten Essential Services and three core functions of public health. The Core Competencies for Public Health Professionals reflect foundational skills applicable to the research and practice of public health. Core competencies are a piece in the public health accreditation process and serve as a starting point for workforce development at local, state, and tribal agencies. Through assessment of these competencies, and as part of the public health accreditation process, agencies can identify training needs and create a workforce development plan. The Allegheny County Health Department (ACHD) first assessed their staff against the core competencies, in 2014 during their initial application for accreditation. Recently, the same assessment tool was administered in 2018 to measure the impact of workforce development activities, as well as prepare ACHD for their upcoming reaccreditation application.
Measuring the long-term outcomes of accreditation, through workforce development, is crucial for public health agencies. Through evidence-based results, agencies can describe the impact of accreditation, demonstrated by a competent qualified workforce able to meet the needs of the community, and deliver the Ten Essential Services, and three core functions of Public Health.
ACHD adapted an assessment tool developed by the Public Health Foundation. The tool provided a baseline and comparative assessment in 2014, and 2018 respectively. Respondents were able to self-rate their perceived level of skill anonymously against each identified competency. The assessment period was conducted from September 4th-24th, 2018.
In 2018, all active employees at ACHD during the assessment period completed the survey. Compared to the initial survey in 2014, the ACHD observed an increase in overall domain competencies across all 8 domains (D1-D8). ACHD staff ranked highest in Policy Development/Program Planning (D2, avg. 2.895), Communication Skills (D3, avg. 2.983), and Cultural Competency Skills (D4, avg. 2.971).
Limitations of self-assessment data must be considered when using these results for workforce development planning. Self-assessment bias and workforce changes, such as internal job restructuring, were identified as limitations. Therefore, limiting the depth of the analysis. Regardless, the increase in competencies across the domains suggest workforce development at ACHD has been successful and should be continued.


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Item Type: Other Thesis, Dissertation, or Long Paper (Master Essay)
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Moffa, Daviddam178@pitt.edudam178
ContributionContributors NameEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairBarron, Geraldgbarron@pitt.edugbarronUNSPECIFIED
Committee MemberDurst, Andreaadurst@pitt.eduadurstUNSPECIFIED
Committee MemberSokol, Jamiejamie.sokol@alleghenycounty.usUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Date: 11 April 2019
Date Type: Submission
Number of Pages: 84
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: School of Public Health > Health Policy & Management
Degree: MPH - Master of Public Health
Thesis Type: Master Essay
Refereed: Yes
Date Deposited: 14 Oct 2019 17:50
Last Modified: 14 Oct 2019 17:50


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