U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Strategic Plan


Start: 2007-10-01, End: 2012-09-30, Publication: 2010-01-19


An agency strategic plan is one of three main elements required by the Government Performance and Results Act (GPRA) of 1993 (Public Law 103-62). The basic requirements for strategic plans appear in the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Circular No. A-11, Part 6, Section 210. According to OMB, “an agency’s strategic plan keys on those programs and activities that carry out the agency’s mission. Strategic plans will provide the overarching framework for an agency’s performance budget.iii In constructing the Strategic Plan, HHS sought to respond to the requirements of both GPRA and OMB. At the same time, HHS incorporated priorities and concepts from the Secretary’s 500-Day Plan, the Secretary’s Ten Health Care Priority Activities, the Departmental Objectives, and the Healthy People 2010 Objectives. Although some of these plans and priorities may change from year to year, the most recent versions appear later in this chapter, in a special section called In the Spotlight: HHS Plans and Priorities. Each of the Department’s operating and staff divisions contributed to the development of this Strategic Plan, from the goals and the broad strategic objectives to the baselines and targets for performance indicators. Representatives from HHS operating and staff divisions provided expert knowledge of HHS’s programs, initiatives, priorities, and performance indicators. This process emphasized creating alignment between the long-range Strategic Plan and annual GPRA reporting in the HHS Annual Performance Plan, Annual Performance Budgets, and Performance and Accountability Report. More information about this alignment appears in Appendix C, Performance Plan Linkage. In developing and selecting performance indicators, HHS sought to include broad health and human service impact measures as well as more intermediate processes and outcomes that have contributed to distal impacts. In several cases, numerous operating and staff divisions play a role in achieving these impacts. Operational and staff division personnel regularly monitor thousands of additional performance indicators to improve program processes and examine effectiveness. However, in this Strategic Plan, HHS focused on a limited set of broad outcomes and impacts to demonstrate Departmental progress. Consultation HHS regularly consults with external stakeholders, as noted in Chapters 2 through 5. In complying with OMB guidance and GPRA, HHS consulted widely with stakeholders to garner input on the Strategic Plan. HHS posted a draft on its Web site (, invited public comment through a notice in the Federal Register, and briefed a number of State, local, and tribal organizations. HHS also sought input from the U.S. Congress and OMB. During its consultation process, HHS received correspondence from more than 40 individuals or organizations, containing nearly 200 unique suggestions. Input ranged from editorial to more substantive comments. HHS has incorporated many of these changes and additions to the final plan.


Name:Owen Ambur


Name:Department of Health and Human Services


Eleven operating divisions, including eight agencies in the United States Public Health Service (USPHS) and three human service agencies, administer HHS’s programs. Eighteen staff divisions provide leadership, direction, and policy and management guidance to the Department. (A complete list of HHS’s operating and staff divisions and a brief description of their activities appear in Appendix F.) HHS works closely with State, local, and tribal governments, and many HHS-funded services are provided at the local level by State, county, local, or tribal agencies, or through grantees in the private sector, including faith-based and community based organizations. HHS accomplishes its mission through more than 300 programs and initiatives that cover a wide spectrum of activities, including the following: Providing Medicare ( • health insurance for Americans who are 65 or older, who are disabled, or who suffer from end stage renal disease) and Medicaid (health insurance for low-income people); * Assuring the safety of food and medical products; * Delivering comprehensive health care for Native Americans; * Promoting access to insurance for the uninsured and necessary health services for medically underserved individuals; * Creating an environment that supports the use of health information technologies; * Preventing disease through immunization; * Promoting healthy lifestyles; * Promoting healthy dietary practices, good nutrition, and regular physical activity; * Improving the oversight of imported food and medical products; * Supporting the prevention and treatment of substance abuse; * Improving maternal and infant health; * Planning and preparing for public health emergencies, including those that result from terrorism; * Providing Head Start (preschool education and services); * Preventing child abuse and domestic violence; * Supporting faith-based and community initiatives; * Improving systems of services in communities to enhance the health and well-being of children and youth with special health care needs and their families; * Providing financial assistance and services for low-income families; * Offering services for older Americans, including home-delivered meals; * Furthering access to health and human services by protecting health information privacy and preventing discrimination in the delivery of these services; and * Conducting, supporting, and overseeing scientific and biomedical research and development related to health and human services. With an FY 2007 budget of $698 billion, HHS represents almost a quarter of all Federal expenditures and administers more grant dollars than all other Federal agencies combined. More than 67,000 people work for HHS. Every 3 years, HHS updates its strategic plan, which describes its operating and staff divisions that work individually and collectively to address complex, multifaceted, and ever-evolving health and human service issues.