California Department of Public Health

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The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) is dedicated to optimizing the health and well-being of the people in California.

CDPH achieves its mission through the following core activities:

  • Promoting healthy lifestyles for individuals and families in their communities and workplaces.
  • Preventing disease, disability, and premature death and reducing or eliminating health disparities.
  • Protecting the public from unhealthy and unsafe environments.
  • Providing or ensuring access to quality, population-based health services.
  • Preparing for and responding to public health emergencies.
  • Producing and disseminating data to inform and evaluate public health status, strategies and programs.

CDPH Public Health Decision Framework

The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) has established a united, three faceted Public Health Decision Framework (Framework) throughout CDPH. The Framework's three facets consist of the Core Public Health Functions and Ten Essential Public Health Services, the Healthy People 2020 Advisory Committee Criteria and the Determinants of Health. This Framework will better position CDPH to respond to the changing public health concerns of the 21st century, while maintaining the gains and achievements made in public health during the past century. The Framework will guide CDPH in proactively prioritizing our work, and will serve as an outline to develop and revise the next CDPH Strategic Plan. The Framework also supports CDPH's mission to optimize the health and well being of the people in California and will help CDPH move closer to its vision of healthy individuals and families in healthful communities.

Division of Drinking Water and Environmental Management

The Division of Drinking Water and Environmental Management (DDWEM) promotes and maintains a physical, chemical, and biological environment that contributes positively to health, prevents illness, and assures protection of the public. The DDWEM has a vested interest in the impacts of agricultural pollution on drinking water and the Central Coast Region Agricultural Waiver regulations aiming to improve water quality. DDWEM's major components are:

  1. Drinking Water Program.
    • The Drinking Water Program regulates public water systems; promotes and provides information on drought preparedness and water conservation; oversees water recycling projects; certifies residential water treatment devices; certifies drinking water treatment and distribution operators; supports and promotes water system security; provides support for small water systems and for improving technical, managerial, and financial (TMF) capacity; oversees the Drinking Water Treatment and Research Fund for MTBE and other oxygenates; and provides funding opportunities for water system improvements, including funding under Proposition 84, Proposition 50 and the Safe Drinking Water State Revolving Fund.
  2. Environmental Management Branch (EMB).
    • EMB regulates medical waste generators, shellfish production and harvesting operations, and recreational health (swimming pools and ocean beaches); provides sanitary surveillance of state institutions; oversees radiological surveillance around federal facilities, the state's radon program, and the Medical Waste Management Program; and houses CDPH's Nuclear Emergency Response Program.
  3. Drinking Water and Radiation Laboratory (DWRL).
    • DWRL provides analytical support to the DDWEM's programs and CDPH's Radiological Health Branch, and, through interagency agreements, to other State agencies. DWRL was formerly known as the Sanitation and Radiation Laboratory.
  4. Environmental Laboratory Accreditation Program (ELAP).
    • ELAP provides evaluation and accreditation of environmental testing laboratories to ensure the quality of analytical data used for regulatory purposes to meet the requirements of the State's food, drinking water, wastewater, shellfish, and hazardous waste programs.