All posts by Ebel, Joe

President’s Message June 2018

As I finish my last month as President of your association, I feel a deep gratitude for the privilege of being able to represent Ohio’s talented and dedicated public health professionals. As an association we have stepped forward to lead, and advocate for, initiatives that improve the health of our state and strengthen the public health system.

Some highlights from the past 12 months:

  • Public Health Nurse’s Role in Emergency/Disaster Shelters white paper was published by the OPHA Public Health Nursing Section. This document provides guidance for public health nurses in general disaster shelters operations.
  • OPHA’s Climate Resiliency Coalition developed and released their white paper, a resource for use by local public health professionals in their efforts to address the public health impacts of climate change and climate-related weather events in their jurisdictions.
  • The Ohio Journal of Public Health (OJPH) has been established to publish high-quality, peer reviewed manuscripts that present research, as well as public health and educational practices that are relevant to Ohio. Submissions for the first edition have been received for publishing this fall.
  • Promoting the adoption of Health and Equity in All Policies (HEiAP) through the release of the OPHA funded Enacting Health and Equity in All Policies: Literature Review and Case Studies report and the introduction of Senate Bill 302, by Senator Tavares, to create the Ohio Health and Equity in All Policies Initiative and the Health and Equity Interagency Team.
  • Advancing the practice of public health in Ohio through the OPHA Vital Statistics conference, Public Health Nursing Conference, the Combined Public Health Conference, and the Public Policy Institute.

I’d like to thank the Board, Governing Council, our many volunteers, the OPHA staff, and all our members, for their support and contributions to the success of OPHA in this past year!

Natalie DiPietro Mager, our incoming president, will continue to need all of us to continue working to support our association, especially as we continue to work through the transition of executive director staffing. I have full confidence that Natalie will do a great job leading the association forward!

Sincerely,
Joe Ebel

Senator Tavares Introduces HEiAP Bill to Improve Health of Ohioans

State Senator Charleta B. Tavares (D-Columbus) recently introduced a bill, Senate Bill 302, to improve Ohio’s poor health indicators by requiring the State to determine how all new rules and regulations would impact the health of Ohioans.

“We know that the health of our citizens influences every aspect of our state – our economy, our productivity and our residents’ success,” said Senator Tavares. “Given that our state consistently ranks among the least healthy in the nation, we must take thoughtful and deliberative action to turn things around. This includes considering the impact every policy proposal has on the overall well-being of Ohioans and, especially, our most vulnerable communities.”

Like Ohio’s Common Sense Initiative, which looks at the impact of all laws and agency rules on business and the economy, SB 302 would require an analysis of all pending bills and agency rules to determine if they will have a positive, adverse or neutral impact on the health of Ohioans and on the attainment of health equity in the state.

The legislation, which is supported by the Ohio Public Health Association (OPHA), aims to demonstrate how even factors such as education, housing, neighborhood safety, transportation and employment can have wide-ranging health implications.

“This could be one of the most important public health policies to be considered in Ohio in many years,” said Joe Ebel, president of OPHA. “If passed, this bill would provide a tool which would allow our state lawmakers to consider the potential health implications of proposed legislation prior to the enactment of any new laws.”

SB 302 also creates an advisory board that would provide an annual report on the impact of the initiative and its effectiveness in improving the overall health of Ohioans and reducing costs. Bill text