ublic Health and Emergency Preparedness
Healthcare and public health are typically conceptualized as separate, albeit related, systems. While there are distinct differences in the role and responsibilities of public health and healthcare professionals, the responsibilities of the two disciplines do overlap in some situations.
Review the website https://www.apha.org/what-is-public-health and respond to the following questions in relation to differentiating public health from healthcare:
- In your opinion, what are the major differences between public health and healthcare? Explain at least two differences.
- Based on these differences, do you agree that public health and healthcare are interdependent? Give reasons in support of your answer.
US public health officials have identified three core functions and ten essential public health services that a health department must perform. Combined with responsibilities associated with disaster or bioterrorism preparedness, which have become pertinent since September 11, 2001, they remain the core responsibilities of all health departments.
Review the following reports:
- Institute of Medicine of the National Academies. (1988). The future of public
health. Retrieved from http://www.iom.edu/Reports/1988/The-Future-
- Institute of Medicine of the National Academies. (n.d.). The future of the
public’s health in the 21st century. Retrieved from http://www.iom.edu/
Based on your review of the reports, respond to the following discussion points in relation to the government’s role in public health:
- Identify one example from your local health department or a health department of your choice that illustrates at least one of the three core public health functions.
- Define the core functions. In 2–3 sentences, examine how this definition applies to your selected example.
The terrorist attack in New York City on September 11, 2001 was a catalyst for significant changes in emergency management nationwide. This tragic event spurred conversations and vigilant efforts at the local, state, and national levels on being prepared in the face of an emergency. Consequently, through new technology, heightened training, and increased interagency collaborations, the nation is, arguably, more prepared for a disaster than it ever has been before.
Select a health department and respond to the following questions regarding advancement in emergency preparedness:
- How has emergency preparedness changed since the September 11, 2001 attacks?
- How do you think the roles and responsibilities of local health departments in emergency preparedness should relate to national efforts?
- Describe the emergency preparedness efforts of your local health department or a health department of your choice. Support your responses using information from the department’s website or other published materials.
Data is critical in all the phases of emergency planning and response. They can be used to assess vulnerabilities in the case of an emergency, make informed decisions during an emergency, and evaluate the success or effectiveness of a response post an emergency.
Respond to the following discussion points in relation to use of data in emergency planning:
- Identify sources of data used to plan and prepare for emergencies.
- Explain how these sources of data are used by professionals as part of the emergency planning process.