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Vision, Mission, and Organization

Milwaukee is a vibrant city committed to improving health among its residents. Through the work of the City of Milwaukee Health Department, the city has experienced significant improvements in childhood immunization rates, birth outcomes among high-risk pregnant women, and the number of children with high blood lead level readings.

The Health Department has accomplished these successes and many more through implementation of evidence-based programs and meticulous data collection that capitalize on its innate ability to quickly respond to illnesses that threaten public health.  

But many challenges still exist.

The Health Department has a long-standing tradition of exceeding goals and expectations and is poised to address the city’s unique needs. It is our pledge that Milwaukee will once again be the healthiest city in the nation.   


The City of Milwaukee Health Department is a leader in assuring that Milwaukee is the healthiest city in the nation, with the best personal health care, environmental health, and population-based preventive services possible.

Because the health of the individual and health of the community are interdependent, we work in partnership with private providers and others to guarantee access to health care, to safeguard the environment, and to provide up-to-date health information using the latest available technology to monitor and assess community health.

The City of Milwaukee Health Department is in the forefront of public health and strives to meet the changing needs of our community.  Our services respond directly to these needs and are delivered in a way which is fully respectful of the rights and dignity of each client in order to promote a partnership with them to achieve and maintain health.

Our ability to serve our clients successfully results from individual and team efforts of the entire staff, who recognize and value each member's unique skills and diversity.


The mission of the City of Milwaukee Health Department is to ensure that services are available to enhance the health of individuals and families, promote healthy neighborhoods, and safeguard the health of the Milwaukee community.


There are three multidisciplinary divisions within the Health Department dedicated to accomplishing specific health outcomes by doing the following:

  • assessing public health needs

  • developing  healthy public health policy

  • assuring that public, non-profit, and private sector collaborate to advance initiatives

  • providing direct services, when needed

Current Health Department Divisions are as follows:

Disease Control and Environmental Health

This division is committed to protecting the citizens and visitors to the City of Milwaukee from infectious diseases and environmental hazards that may be present or occur within the community.  Specific programs included in this division are: communicable disease reporting and control, tuberculosis control and prevention, sexually transmitted disease control and prevention, adult and childhood immunizations, childhood lead poisoning prevention, food inspection services, water quality assurance, hazardous materials management, indoor and outdoor air quality assurance and, public health emergency preparedness and response.

Family and Community Health

This division promotes the health and well-being of individuals and families throughout the life cycle. Supported by epidemiological data and research, FCH facilitates access to healthcare and other community services and resources; offers direct services as such as home visits to at-risk families, immunizations, cancer screening, and WIC; and designs community education campaigns around tobacco, teen pregnancy, and other health issues. 

Laboratory Services

This division is composed of three laboratories that utilize special technologies to help health professionals analyze the risk of disease, prevent exposures, and diagnose illness. Microbiology tests for bacteria and parasites that cause disease, including tuberculosis, sexually transmitted infections, contaminants of food and water used for drinking and swimming. Chemistry analyzes environmental toxins including lead in children's blood and in dust, paint and soil, as well as food contaminants, environmental pollutants, and industrial hazards. Virology tests for viruses that cause AIDS, influenza, diarrhea, meningitis, and other diseases in both environmental and clinical samples. These laboratories assist local hospital and clinical laboratories, respond to emergencies like bioterrorism, and provide disease surveillance for local, national and international health organization. They also work with local academic institutions in training and education and is involved in applied public health research activities.


Learn More

Read our "Getting to Know the City of Milwaukee Health Department" booklet by clicking here.

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