In November 2004, the Association of Public Health Laboratories (APHL) conducted a Comprehensive Laboratory Services Survey of State Public Health Laboratories (SPHLs) in order to establish the baseline data necessary for Healthy People 2010 Objective 23-13. This objective aims to measure the increase in the proportion of health agencies that provide or assure access to comprehensive laboratory services to support essential public health services. This assessment addressed only SPHLs and served as a baseline to periodically evaluate the level of improvement in the provision of laboratory services over the decade ending 2010. The 2004 survey used selected questions that were identified as key indicators of provision of comprehensive laboratory services. The survey was developed in consultation with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention National Center for Health Statistics, based on newly developed data sources. Forty-seven states and one territory responded to the survey. The survey was based on the 11 core functions of SPHLs as previously defined by APHL. The range of performance among individual laboratories for the 11 core functions (subobjectives) reflects the challenging issues that have confronted SPHLs in the first half of this decade. APHL is now working on a coordinated effort with other stakeholders to create seamless state and national systems for the provision of laboratory services in support of public health programs. These services are necessary to help face the threats raised by the specter of terrorism, emerging infections, and natural disasters.