The National Board of Public Health Examiners Celebrates its 10th Anniversary

Interview by Taylarr Lopez, Communications Specialist, NACCHO

The National Board of Public Health Examiners (NBPHE) ensures public health professionals have the knowledge and skills relevant to the core areas of public health by administering a voluntary certification examination. Candidates who successfully pass the examination receive a Certification in Public Health (CPH), which demonstrates to employers that they have mastered key contemporary public health sciences. Now in its tenth year, NBPHE’s certification exam and resources are more relevant to the public health workforce than ever. Below, Allison Foster, MBA, CAE, President of the NBPHE, describes the benefits of being certified and highlights the resources candidates can use to help achieve certification. Continue reading

Taking Action to Address the Public Health Impact of Wildfire Smoke

By Alan Vette, Acting Director, Air and Energy National Research Program (ORD), United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Erika Sasser, Director, Health and Environmental Impacts Division (OAQPS), EPA

This story originally ran in NACCHO’s Essential Elements blog.

During Air Quality Awareness Week (April 30 – May 4), a focus on wildfire smoke is timely for public health because the 2018 wildfire season is about to begin for most of the U.S., and it has already started in some areas.

Exposure to wildfire smoke is a community health issue that has gained the attention of public health professionals and organizations, especially in states where fires are becoming more frequent and intense. Wildfire smoke has significant health implications for those near the fire as well as for those living farther downwind. Continue reading

Member Spotlight: Health Director Joey Smith Highlights His Department’s Role as a “Choice Architect” and Describes His Hopes of Helping His Community Live One Million Years Longer

Interview by Taylarr Lopez, Communications Specialist, NACCHO

NACCHO’s Member Spotlight series features interviews with local health department leaders and staff about their careers in public health. This interview features Joey Smith, Health Director of the Montgomery County Health Department in Tennessee and NACCHO Board Member. Below he shares how his health department is bridging the gap to healthcare by providing primary care services and highlights the success of the department’s Healthier Streets & Neighborhoods program. Continue reading

Dakota County Public Health Builds on Breastfeeding Program to Create Rapid Referral System

By Harumi Reis-Reilly, MS, LDN, CHES, IBCLC, Lead Program Analyst, NACCHO, and Katie Galloway, MBA, RD, LD, IBCLC, Dakota County WIC Program

Dakota County Public Health Department (DCPHD) in Minnesota, a 2017 NACCHO Model Practice awardee, built upon their comprehensive breastfeeding program and implemented a rapid referral system to expand access to critical lactation care to low-income families. Through the Reducing Breastfeeding Disparities through Peer and Professional Support grant, DCPHD increased participation by 68% in prenatal breastfeeding classes and more than doubled their rapid-response lactation visits. Continue reading

Celebrating National Public Health Week through Collaboration, Engagement, and Action

By Umair A. Shah, MD, MPH, NACCHO President and Executive Director of Harris County Public Health in Houston, Texas

April 2–8 is National Public Health Week (NPHW), a time to recognize the key contributions of public health and highlight issues that are important to improving our nation’s health. The celebration, organized by the American Public Health Association, is commemorated during the first full week in April each year. This year’s theme is “Healthiest Nation 2030: Changing Our Future Together” and underscores the importance of improving health in the places in which people live, learn, work, worship, and play. Each day is dedicated to a topic-specific theme: behavioral health, infectious disease, environmental health, injury and violence prevention, and ensuring the right to health. NPHW presents a terrific opportunity for local health departments (LHDs) to engage partners and community members to raise awareness about the life-saving work we do year-round. Continue reading

Are America’s Local Health Departments Prepared for a Cape Town-level Water Crisis?

This story originally ran in NACCHO’s Essential Elements.

Americans currently use about 100 gallons of water per day per person. In Cape Town, South Africa, extreme drought has limited residents to just 13 gallons of water per day since February 1. Depending on rainfall over the coming months, water taps in households and businesses may shut off entirely in this popular tourist destination, one of the wealthiest cities in Africa. Continue reading

Member Spotlight: Boston Public Health Commission Executive Director Monica Valdes Lupi Discusses the Evolution of Local Health Departments’ Role in Public Health and Her Path to Leadership

Interview by Taylarr Lopez, Communications Specialist, NACCHO

NACCHO’s Member Spotlight series features interviews with local health department leaders and staff about their careers in public health. This interview features Monica Valdes Lupi, JD, MPH, Executive Director of the Boston Public Health Commission (MA). She is also a member of NACCHO’s Board of Directors. Below, she shares what led her to become Executive Director of the Boston Public Health Commission and steps her department is taking to prepare for the future. Continue reading