First of all I would like to say thanks to each of you for allowing me the opportunity to serve you this year as SHA President. I’ve been in public health for 14 years now and all I can say is; public health is forever changing.
Looking toward the future of public health and the goals we want to achieve, we have to take a step back to see where we’ve came from and the progress we’ve made. We must celebrate our public health successes: vaccine preventable disease, improved tobacco laws and decrease teen pregnancy rates. Even with these successes, we have a way to go to improve health disparities, chronic disease, and infant mortality; and be able to conquer recent public health issues such as social inequities, increases in IV drug use, and new emerging diseases.
Public health does not have borders, it is a challenge for each of our states and we need to strategize on how public health is going to address issues in our communities. Whether it is Zika, natural or man-made disasters, disease outbreaks or the many chronic diseases we face, it is good to have colleagues in surrounding states that have dealt with these situations to call on for support and advice.
Southern Health Association is comprised of eight state affiliates and one county affiliate. I ask that each of you speak to your state and county public health workers to join our amazing organization. There is strength in numbers and together we can work to prevent current and future issues that affect our lives. We have a long road to go, but I look forward to the journey.
To serve as the regional advocate for public health and for the development and growth of its leadership.
To foster and stimulate a greater degree of scientific effort in the protection and improvement of public health, and to bring about better understanding, integration and promotion of public health service.
Southern Health Update
SHA publishes newsletters throughout the year which are available on our website. Members are encouraged to contribute articles for publication.
In addition to articles relating to SHA, the Southern Health “Update” also includes a section on what’s going on in the various states in the region, state affiliate association news, and a consumer news section.
Publisher: Diana Kreider
Editors: Shelia Puckett and Jan Cooke