Preventive Health and Health Services Block Grant

This page has been automatically translated from English. MSDH has not reviewed this translation and is not responsible for any inaccuracies.

The federal Preventive Health and Health Services (PHHS) Block Grant provides funding to manage and prevent health problems in Mississippi that range from unintentional injury deaths to community water fluoridation.

PHHS Block Grant dollars fund a total of seven different Mississippi health programs. Mississippi receives over $2 million each year through the PHHS Block Grant to fund health programs statewide. PHHS Block Grant funds allow Mississippi to use dollars where needed, when needed to protect the public’s health.

Unintentional Injury Deaths

PHHS Block Grant funds are used to promote child passenger safety, purchase child care safety seats, distribute educational materials, and co-sponsor child safety seat checkpoints. The Child Safety Seat Program is a statewide child safety seat distribution and educational program offered to underserved families. The program purchases and distributes car seats to individuals in all parts of the state.

School, Worksite and Community-Based Preventive Health

PHHS Block Grant funds are used to support and increase the number of schools, worksites and communities that promote behaviors and environments related to the prevention and control of risk factors associated with chronic diseases, such as obesity, physical inactivity, poor nutrition and smoking. Community Health and Prevention staff implement chronic disease prevention programs and evidence-based health promotion statewide that are policy-focused, and engage a diverse array of partners.

Prescription Drug Abuse

PHHS Block Grant Funds are used to support awareness of controlled substance prescription drug abuse, misuse, and overdose in Mississippi. Controlled substance dispensing trends and data on opioid-related hospitalizations and hospital utilization rates will inform prescribers, policy makers and other stakeholders. Hospital discharge data from 2010-2011 has described demographic and clinical risk factors for hospitalizations for opioid misuse, substance use disorders among pregnancy-related hospitalizations, and hospitalizations for neonatal abstinence syndrome in Mississippi. 2010-2011 opioid-related hospitalization frequencies by zip code have also been geocoded and mapped for presentation to local stakeholders. These data serve as a baseline to assess the impact of interventions or policies on controlled substance prescribing, and future hospitalizations and hospital utilization rates related to opioid overuse.

Video Remote Interpretation Pilot

Through PHHS Block Grant funds, this pilot project, now in the data collection stage, is being tested in MSDH clinics in Forrest and Hinds counties. As proposed, the project uses remote video technology and trained medical interpreters to work with health providers and Limited English Proficiency patients to increase language assistance capacity. During this pilot, trained medical interpreters based at MSDH's Office of Health Disparity Elimination headquarters are contacted by clinic staff as needed to provide interpreting services. The services are provided free of charge. For more information, contact

Working Effectively with Medical Interpreters

PHHS funding supports MSDH's Office of Health Disparity Elimination in conducting training to health care providers on how to work with medical interpreters in clinical encounters. Training is being offered throughout 2016 across the state. For more information, contact

Cultural Competence in Health Care

PHHS Block Grant funds support the MSDH Office of Health Disparity Elimination as it helps health care organizations to become more culturally competent amid Mississippi’s changing demographics. Training and technical assistance are available to healthcare organizations across the state. For more information, contact

Performance Improvement

PHHS Block Grant funds are used to support the Office of Performance Improvement in leading the agency through the Public Health Accreditation Board (PHAB) national accreditation process. Major tasks involved in this process include the completion of a State Health Assessment (SHA), State Health Improvement Plan (SHIP), Strategic Plan, Workforce Development Plan, and a comprehensive performance management system, including performance measurement and quality improvement.

Rape Prevention and Education

PHHS Block Grant funds are used to supplement funding of rape crisis centers statewide. From July 1, 2016 through April 30, 2016 (latest data available), PHHS funding helped rape crisis centers respond to over 4,000 crisis calls, and provide direct or referral services to 1,382 female victims of sexual assault, 432 of whom were minors under the age of eighteen, and 93 male victims of sexual assault, 78 of whom were minors under the age of eighteen. The rape crisis centers statewide present primary prevention education messages to youth and adults, using nationally-recognized curricula, and also work with their communities to raise awareness of the prevalence of sexual assault and the availability of services for its victims.

Community Water Fluoridation

PHHS Block Grant funds are used to encourage local communities to pursue water fluoridation. Because over 97% of its population receives water from public water systems, Mississippi has great potential to increase the population that receives fluoridated water, and thereby reduce the prevalence of dental caries. Currently, 201 public water systems adjust the fluoride content of their water, 18 systems are naturally fluoridated and 46 systems are connected to an adjusted or naturally fluoridated system, for a total of 265 fluoridated systems that serve 55% of the state's population.

Find Out More


Nikki Johnson
MSDH Office of Preventive Health & Health Equity
Mississippi State Department of Health
715 S. Pear Orchard Road
Ridgeland, MS 39157

Last reviewed on Jan 14, 2020 request edits
Mississippi State Department of Health 570 East Woodrow Wilson Dr Jackson, MS 39216 866‑HLTHY4U Contact and information

Facebook Twitter Instagram RSS

Accredited by the national Public Health Accreditation Board