Daily public health responses are threatened by the inadequate capacity of public health agencies. A 2012 Institute of Medicine report defined a package of foundational capabilities that support all programs and services within a health department. Standardizing foundational capabilities may help address the increasing disparity in health department performance nationally. During the Fall of 2013, we collected information on how much state and local health departments knew about foundational capabilities. To our knowledge, this was the first study to assess current health department infrastructure as it relates to foundational capabilities.