Los Angeles County Department of Public Health
|Formed||July 6, 2006|
|Preceding department||LA County Department of Health Services|
|Jurisdiction||Los Angeles County|
|Headquarters||Los Angeles, California
|Employees||4 ,258 (2010)|
|Annual budget||US$804,189,000 (2010)|
|Department executive||Jeffrey Gunzenhauser, Interim Director|
|Parent department||LA County Board of Supervisors|
The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health (DPH) provides public health services to Los Angeles County residents in conjunction with the Los Angeles County Department of Health Services (DHS). Jeffrey Gunzenhauser is the interim director of the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health and is the health officer for Los Angeles County. In the 2009-2010 fiscal year, DPH had a budget of US$804,189,000. On March 27, 2014, former director Johnathan Fielding announced that he will retire from the department and go back to UCLA "to help train future health leaders and do research on how we can be even more effective."
Public health programs include:
- Environmental health: operates restaurant rating system and grading systems for apartments and rental homes; inspects sewage treatment and water plants; enforces state and local environmental laws
- Communicable disease control and prevention
- Alcohol and drug abuse programs
- Bioterrorism prevention
- AIDS prevention
- Family planning
- Cancer treatment
Until the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors approved the establishment of DPH on May 30, 2006, public health functions were assumed by the Los Angeles County Department of Health Services. DPH was formally established on July 7, 2006.
On May 10, 2013, the AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) submitted 70,000 signatures to qualify a City of Los Angeles ballot measure, the "City of Los Angeles Public Health Protection Act," on creating a separate Los Angeles City Public Health Department to be placed on the June 2014 ballot. AHF claims that DPH has fallen short in managing several public health issues, including tuberculosis and syphilis, accusing it of having a corrupt, bloated and inefficient bureaucracy.
However, the Los Angeles City Council has opposed this proposal, as Los Angeles City has contracted for public health services with the County since 1964, as part of a consolidation effort to reduce duplication and improve efficiency of services, and the City's desire to transfer financial responsibility for public health services to the County tax base.
The city is considering a lawsuit over the validity of the AHF-backed ballot initiative, as it does not have the necessary funds or expertise to effectively enforce public health laws. The annual costs of operating an independent public health department would be roughly $261 million. On September 17, 2013, the County Board of Supervisors also voted unanimously to oppose that ballot measure. AHF is a longtime County contractor with a strained relationship to the County--an audit in August 2012 found that AHF had overbilled DPH by more than $1.7 million.
- "Assessor". County of Los Angeles Annual Report 2009-2010. Public Affairs, Chief Executive Office. p. 43. Retrieved 17 October 2012.
- Abby Sewell, Top L.A. County public health official announces he's retiring, Los Angeles Times, March 27, 2014
- "Department of Public Health Fiscal Condition and Separation from the Department of Health Services (Item No. 72, Agenda of June 30, 2009)". Chief Executive Office. County of Los Angeles. 29 June 2009. Retrieved 19 September 2013.
- "AHF: Ballot Measure for Separate Los Angeles City Public Health Department Qualifies". AIDS Healthcare Foundation. 5 June 2013. Retrieved 19 September 2013.
- Abram, Susan (19 February 2013). "UPDATE: AIDS Healthcare Foundation seeks vote to create City of L.A. health department". Los Angeles Daily News. Retrieved 19 September 2013.
- Fielding, Jonathan E. (1 April 2013). "Impact of "City of Los Angeles Public Health Protection Act"". Department of Public Health. County of Los Angeles. Retrieved 19 September 2013.
- Mehta, Seema; Anna Gorman (18 September 2013). "L.A. County supervisors oppose separate city health department". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 19 September 2013.
- Walton, Alice (28 May 2013). "LA City Council opposes creation of its own public health department". Represent! (KPCC). Retrieved 19 September 2013.
- Gorman, Anna (17 September 2013). "Separate L.A. city health department put on June ballot". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 19 September 2013.
- "AIDS Healthcare Foundation, Inc. - A Department of Public Health HIV/AIDS Care and Prevention Service Contract Provider". Department of Auditor-Controller. County of Los Angeles. 16 August 2012. Retrieved 19 September 2013.
- Department of Public Health
- Department of Health Services
- Department of Mental Health
- Restaurant Watch: Restaurant Grades