Public health finance is a complex field that requires accountability and transparency on the part of public health agencies. The need for these agencies, however, to answer to many funding sources creates more complexity. Communicating public health financial matters to the public requires a balance of technical accuracy and lay understanding. A national expert panel has developed public health financial competencies organized into three categories: (1) financial management, analysis and assessment; (2) policy development and program planning; and (3) administrative and general. The authors developed a survey for public health finance managers that asked them to indicate in which areas more training is necessary and how it should be delivered. A total of 112 complete responses were obtained across 30 states. The respondents identified several areas where training is highly important including:
The officers demonstrated a high level of agreement that more training is required and that having competence in financial matters is critical to public accountability.