HHS Offices and Agencies


HHS Offices and Agencies (Often referred to as Operating Divisions [OPDIVs]) in which Commissioned Corps officers serve

Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ)
AHRQ supports research designed to improve the outcomes and quality of health care, reduce its costs, address patient safety and medical errors, and broaden access to effective services. The research sponsored, conducted, and disseminated by AHRQ provides information that helps people make better decisions about health care.

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Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR)
Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) ATSDR's mission is to prevent exposure and adverse human health effects and diminished quality of life associated with exposure to hazardous substances from waste sites, unplanned releases, and other sources of pollution present in the environment. Commissioned Corps officers work throughout the agency in positions varying from scientific to managerial. Although a majority of officers within the agency are environmental health officers or engineers, officers from almost every category are assigned to ATSDR.

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Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) CDC's mission is to promote health and quality of life by preventing and controlling disease, injury, and disability. CDC works with national and international partners to monitor health, detect and investigate health problems, conduct research to enhance prevention, develop and advocate sound public health policies, implement prevention strategies, promote healthy behaviors, foster safe and healthful environments, and provide leadership and training. CDC also has a major role in protecting the public from biological or chemical terrorism. Commissioned Corps officers are assigned to programs throughout the agency in positions varying from beginning Epidemiology Intelligence Service officers to senior management. More than half of the medical officers within the Commissioned Corps are assigned to the CDC.

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Food and Drug Administration (FDA)
Food and Drug Administration (FDA) FDA, one of our Nation's oldest consumer protection agencies, ensures the safety of foods and cosmetics and the safety and efficacy of pharmaceuticals, biological products, and medical devices. Its employees monitor the manufacture, import, transport, storage, and sale of about $1 trillion worth of products each year. Commissioned Corps officers from all professions are assigned to the FDA and serve in various capacities to advance the agency's mission.

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Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA)
HRSA directs national health programs that improve the Nation's health by assuring equitable access to comprehensive, quality health care for all. It works to improve and extend life for people living with HIV/AIDS, provide primary health care to medically underserved people, serve women and children through State programs, and train a health workforce that is both diverse and motivated to work in underserved communities.

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Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS)
Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) CMS, a major component of HHS, was created in 1977 to bring together the two largest Federal health care programs—Medicare and Medicaid. CMS also administers other major programs such as the State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP); the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act (MMA); and the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). The mission of CMS is to ensure health care security for its beneficiaries.

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Indian Health Service (IHS)
Indian Health Service (IHS) IHS is the principal Federal health care advocate and provider for American Indians and Alaska Natives who belong to more than 550 federally recognized tribes in 35 States. It provides comprehensive health care services, including preventive, curative, rehabilitative, and environmental.

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National Institutes of Health (NIH)
National Institutes of Health (NIH) NIH is the Nation's medical research agency. Composed of 27 Institutes and Centers, NIH provides leadership and financial support to researchers in every State and throughout the world. Helping to lead the way toward important medical discoveries that improve people's health and save lives, NIH scientists investigate ways to prevent disease, as well as the causes, treatments, and even cures for common and rare diseases. As a part of the NIH community, Commissioned Corps officers contribute to vital research efforts that can improve health globally.

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Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health (ASH)
ASH is under the direction of the Assistant Secretary for Health, who serves as the senior advisor on public health and science issues to the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). The office serves as the focal point of leadership and coordination in public health and science across HHS; provides direction to program offices within ASH; and provides advice and counsel to the Secretary on public health and science issues.

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Office of the Secretary
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is our Nation's principal agency for protecting the health of all Americans and providing essential human services, especially for those who are least able to help themselves. The department includes more than 300 programs covering a wide spectrum of activities, such as health and social science research; prevention of mental illnesses, substance abuse, and other health disorders; and medical preparedness for emergencies, including potential terrorism. The Office of the Secretary oversees program missions and accomplishments and coordinates a budget that accounts for almost one-fourth of all Federal expenditures. Commissioned Corps officers work within the Office of the Secretary as expert advisors within their fields.

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Program Support Center (PSC)
PSC provides products and services on a competitive, fee-for-service basis to customers throughout HHS, as well as to approximately 13 other executive departments and 18 independent Federal agencies. Commissioned Corps officers support the PSC primarily in the areas of human resources, health care, and administrative services.

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Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA)
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) SAMHSA works to improve the quality and availability of prevention, treatment, and rehabilitative services in order to reduce illness, death, disability, and cost to society resulting from substance abuse and mental illnesses.


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Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR)
The Office of ASPR (formerly the Office of Public Health Emergency Preparedness) serves as the Secretary's principal advisory staff on matters related to bioterrorism and other public health emergencies. ASPR also coordinates interagency activities between HHS, other Federal departments, agencies, offices and State and local officials responsible for emergency preparedness and the protection of the civilian population from acts of bioterrorism and other public health emergencies.

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