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Health Planning Announcements

August 2017: Tennessee State Oral Health Plan

The Tennessee Department of Health has finalized the 2017 Edition of the Tennessee State Oral Health Plan. In accordance with Tennessee Code Annotated § 68-1-305, this plan will serve as the state’s first statewide, comprehensive oral health plan. The state oral health plan offers a blueprint for improving the health of the people of Tennessee by framing the issue of dental disease and prioritizing four key areas for addressing oral health in the state:

1) Monitoring Disease in Tennessee,

2) Oral Health Education and Advocacy,

3) Prevention, and

4) Oral Health Resources & Workforce.

The plan outlines a series of recommendations, categorized into these four key areas, which will be carried out over the next five years with assistance from state, local, and community partners. These recommendations will serve as the first steps in addressing oral health throughout the state and ensuring oral health is included in efforts to address the overall health and well-being of the people of Tennessee. The Plan highlights the important efforts that are already underway across the state to address oral health while also clearly identifying gaps in resources and knowledge along with meaningful action to be taken to address these gaps.

The Oral Health Plan was informed by a thorough public process over many months that provided numerous opportunities for public and private stakeholders to participate in the development process. The Department worked diligently to ensure the expertise of stakeholders from across the state is represented in the final Plan. The guidance and knowledge provided by stakeholders has been invaluable and their support is appreciated.

To access the Tennessee State Oral Health Plan visit: and/or

June 2017: Public Hearing on Revisions to Certificate of Need Standards and Criteria 

The Department of Health, in cooperation with the Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services, is hosting a public hearing to gather public and stakeholder comments and recommendations for revisions to the Certificate of Need Standards and Criteria for Acute Care Beds and Non-Residential Substitution-Based Treatment Centers for Opiate Addiction. An agenda for the hearing is attached. The hearing will take place Friday, July 21st from 1:00 to 3:00 pm CDT at the Lentz Public Health Center. Please contact Elizabeth Jones, Assistant Director of Health Planning, with any comments or questions you may have. Both Departments look forward to hearing the expertise and recommendations of interested parties. Your collaboration and support throughout the revision process is appreciated.

Public Hearing on revisions to the Certificate of Need Standards and Criteria for Acute Care Beds and Non-Residential Substitution-Based Treatment Centers for Opiate Addiction

Lentz Public Health Center
2500 Charlotte Avenue
Nashville, TN
1st Floor, Centennial C
Friday, July 21
1:00-3:00 p.m. CDT

February 2017: 2016 Edition of the State Health Plan

The 2016 Edition of the State Health Plan has been approved by Governor Haslam and is adopted as official State Health Policy. The Department of Health’s Division of Health Planning is charged by statute with developing a State Health Plan to “guide the development of health care programs and policies and in the allocation of health care resources in the state” and with updating the State Health Plan annually.

The Division of Health Planning is also charged with developing and revising Certificate of Need (CON) Standards and Criteria that are used by the Health Services Development Agency (HSDA) to review and approve or deny Certificate of Need applications in the state. Public Chapter 1043, effective July 1, 2016, added organ transplantation and freestanding emergency departments to the services and facilities overseen by the CON program. In response, the Division of Health Planning accelerated its efforts to develop CON Standards and Criteria for these two new areas in order to allow the HSDA to be able to appropriately review these applications. As a result of this accelerated process, the 2016 Edition to the State Health Plan is comprised solely of CON Standards and Criteria for Organ Transplantation Services and Freestanding Emergency Departments.

These Standards were informed by a thorough public process over many months that included public meetings, stakeholder meetings, and the opportunity for interested parties to review and make comments on the draft versions. The Division worked diligently to ensure the expertise of stakeholders from across the state is adequately represented in these Standards. 

January 2017: Oral Health Plan Public Meetings

The Department of Health is currently developing the first Oral Health Plan for the state of Tennessee.  The plan will focus on four primary areas; oral health issues in the state, oral health advocacy, oral health resources and the oral health workforce. These public meetings will provide industry stakeholders and the general public with the opportunity to be formally involved in the development process, ensuring the views and needs of the people of the state are represented in the Oral Health Plan. Dates, times and locations of the meetings are:

 Monday, January 23rd
9:00-11:00 am CST
Metro Nashville Public Health Department
2500 Charlotte Avenue, Nashville, TN 37209

 Thursday, January 26th
1:00-3:00 pm EST
Southeast Regional Health Office
1301 Riverfront Parkway, Suite 209, Chattanooga, TN, 37402

 Thursday, February 2nd
1:00-3:00 pm CST
Jackson-Madison Health Department
804 North Parkway, Jackson, TN 38305

 Friday, February 3rd
9:00-11:00 am CST
Shelby County Health Department – Auditorium
814 Jefferson Avenue, Memphis, TN 38105

 Thursday, February 9th
1:00-3:00 pm ESTCansler YMCA
616 Jessamine Street, Knoxville, TN 37917

 Friday, February 10th
9:00-11:00am EST
Northeast State Community College
Library, Room L106
2425 TN-75, Blountville, TN 37617

The Oral Health Plan will serve to uphold and advance the mission of the Department of health to “protect, promote and improve the health and prosperity of people in Tennessee”.

Those with questions regarding the meetings may contact Elizabeth Jones at

October 2016: Population Health Public Meetings

The Tennessee Department of Health will conduct regional workshops across the state in October and November, providing residents opportunities to suggest ways to improve population health.  Dates, times and locations are:

 Oct. 13 – 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., University of Memphis, University Center
 Oct. 21 – 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., Lentz Public Health Center, Nashville
 Oct. 26 – 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., YMCA of East Tennessee, Knoxville
 Oct. 28 – 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., Metro Health Dept., Jackson
 Nov. 4 – 1:00 to 5:00 p.m., Southeast Regional Health Office, Chattanooga
 Nov. 9 – 1:00 to 5:00 p.m. – ETSU Natural History Museum, Gray

ETSU will also host a population health improvement feedback session starting 10 a.m. Nov. 9 in the Natural History Museum; this session is also open to the general public. Information from the meetings will be assessed to help TDH develop a stronger state health plan for 2017 and beyond.

“The Tennessee Vital Signs Workshops will give people in Tennessee voice on how population health should be defined and measured, and to have conversations with others about population health needs and concerns,” said TDH Commissioner John Dreyzehner, MD, MPH. “While all of us want healthcare to be there when we need it, what we really want is simply health itself, and these workshops will help us better understand what that looks like from a variety of viewpoints.” 

“From our perspective, the state health plan is a living document that needs the thoughts and voices of many stakeholders to ensure it continually impacts health where we live, labor, learn, play and pray,” said TDH Health Planning Director Jeff Ockerman.  “The workshops will provide a great opportunity for residents to have their voices heard and to help shape the state health plan in a way that positively affects all Tennesseans.”

Those wanting to participate in the meetings may send an email to or call 615-741-1739. 

April 2016: State Health Plan Public Meetings

The Tennessee Department of Health has scheduled nine meetings across the state to collect input from the general public about the State Health Plan. Each meeting will be in a workshop setting, allowing participants to provide comments and recommendations for setting health objectives for communities and to address the state’s population health improvement plan.  Click here for the public forum agenda.

The schedule of workshops includes:

Knoxville - Wednesday, April 20, 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. (Eastern time) – Knox County Health Department, Auditorium,140 Dameron Ave., 37917. 

Chattanooga - Thursday, April 21, 5:00 to 8:00 p.m. (Eastern time) – Eastgate Building, Conference Room 2.307, 5600 Brainerd Road, 37411.

Clarksville – Tuesday, April 26, 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. (Central time) – Montgomery County Health Department, 330 Pageant Lane, 37040.

Nashville – Wednesday, April 27, 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. (Central time) – William R. Snodgrass Tennessee Tower, Tennessee Room 1, 3rd floor, 312 Rosa L Parks Blvd., 37219. 

Cookeville – Thursday, April 28, 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. (Central time) – Upper Cumberland Regional Health Office, 1100 England Drive, 38501. 

Gray – Friday, April 29, 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. (Eastern time) – ETSU Natural History Museum, Gray Fossil Site, 1212 Suncrest Drive, 37615.

Fayetteville – Tuesday, May 3, 5:00 to 8:00 p.m. (Central time) – Fayetteville City Municipal Building, Auditorium, 110 Elk Ave. South, 37334.

Jackson – Wednesday, May 4, 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. (Central Time) - Jackson Madison County Library, Program Center, 433 E Lafayette Street, 38301.

Memphis – Thursday, May 5, 4:00 to 7:00 p.m. (Central time) – University of Memphis, University Center, Fountain View Room, UC 350, 499 University Street, 38111. 

Those with questions or wanting to confirm their attendance should contact Christina Hartlage in the TDH Health Planning office at 615-741-1739 or