Visit for the latest Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) updates.

You are here

In This Section:

Public Health Laboratory Systems Survey


The Public Health Laboratory Systems Survey (PHLSS) has 10 sections that correspond to the 10 Essential Public Health Services and the 10 PHI-12 objectives. Each section has one to three questions about the relevant Essential Service that solicit Likert scale responses. APHL previously developed a document called the “Key Elements/Capacities for Highly Functioning State Public Health Laboratory Systems” that was the guide in the creation of the PHLSS. The document identifies the capacities that should be in place in a State Public Health Laboratory System in order for that system to be functioning at a high level in support of the 10 Essential Public Health Services. A taskforce composed of APHL members and staff developed questions that asked for the respondent’s level of agreement as it pertained to statements of a State Public Health Laboratory System’s performance based on the “Key Elements” document.

Association of Public Health Laboratories
Data Years Available: 
Mode of Collection: 
Sample survey: Internet questionnaire
Selected Content: 
Information is obtained on how the state public health laboratory systems are performing with respect to the 10 Essential Public Health Services (see below). 1. Monitor health status to identify and solve community health problems. 2. Diagnose and investigate health problems and health hazards in the community. 3. Inform, educate, and empower people about health issues. 4. Mobilize community partnerships and action to identify and solve health problems. 5. Develop policies and plans that support individual and community health efforts. 6. Enforce laws and regulations that protect health and ensure safety. 7. Link people to needed personal health services and assure the provision of health care when otherwise unavailable. 8. Assure competent public and personal health care workforce. 9. Evaluate effectiveness, accessibility, and quality of personal and population-based health services. 10. Research for new insights and innovative solutions to health problems.
Population Covered: 
The Public Health Laboratory Systems Survey was distributed via an internet survey to all state (including DC) public health laboratory directors.

The PHLSS is a cross-sectional internet survey. Sampling occurs biennially.

Response Rates and Sample Size: 

The response rate was 43/51(84.3%) public health laboratory systems in 2012.

Interpretation Issues: