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Government Documents - Executive Branch - Department of Health and Human Services: Home

About the agency

The current Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) was created in 1979 as part of the Department of Education Organization Act (20 U..S.C. 3508) splitting the existing Department of Health, Education, and Welfare created in 1953. Prior to that, the Federal Security Administration, created in 1939, had responsibility for public health, and can trace it's origin back to 1798 as part of the Department of Treasury.

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Our holdings

Government Documents provides access to an extensive collection of DHHS publications (mostly in the HE call number range) and some older publications under their earlier call numbers.  Since the Department of Health and Human Services strengthens the public health and welfare of the American people by making affordable and quality health care and childcare accessible, ensuring the safety of food products, preparing for public health emergencies, and advancing the diagnosis, treatment, and curing of life-threatening illnesses, there is a wide variety of information available from technical and statistical publications to consumer information, from drug safety to emergecy responses.

U.S. Public Health Service (USPHS) Commissioned Corps

The Public Health Service (PHS) began as the Marine Hospital Service in the Treasury Department in 1798. It became PHS in 1912 and was transferred to the Federal Security Agency in 1939. It became part of the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare in 1953. PHS is led by the Surgeon General of the United States, who directs the Commissioned Corps of health professionals who work to promote health and prevent disease throughout the federal government.

The U.S. Public Health Service (USPHS) Commissioned Corps is an elite team of more than 6,500 full-time, well-trained, highly qualified public health professionals. USPHS falls under the leadership of the Assistant Secretary of Health and the Surgeon General within theDepartment of Health and Human Services (DHHS)

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