|Happy New Year! |
OPHA is excited about the many opportunities ahead in the new year. One such opportunity is the expansion of our association to include an Epidemiology Section, which was approved at the December Governing Council meeting. I am grateful to the OPHA members who provided their support to create the new Section, with special thanks to Ross Kauffman for spearheading the effort and serving as the inaugural chair. This new section is open to students and professionals alike. Any OPHA member who is interested to join the Epidemiology Section can do so by updating the member profile on the OPHA website (as a reminder, there is no limit to the number of Sections that a member can join!). In addition, we welcome new members to OPHA and the Section. Please help us to spread the word across Ohio about this new and valuable resource for those who work, study, or are interested in epidemiology!
In 2019, OPHA will continue to focus on our priorities including health and equity in all policies (HEiAP) and climate resiliency, among others. Please don’t hesitate to reach out to me if you would like to volunteer for these or any of our other efforts or to share any ideas or suggestions you have for OPHA in the new year.
Warmest wishes for your professional and personal well-being in 2019 and beyond,
As OPHA president, I have the privilege of representing the shared goals of our members, and the challenge of speaking for our diverse and dedicated public health workforce of academics, students, nurses, health educators, administrators, and a wide variety of other public health professionals and clinicians.
It is impossible for one person, or even a board, to be the inclusive voice for Public Health and to ensure the optimal health of all Ohioans. It requires that we are all active members of the Association. Each of us can contribute by providing leadership on issues affecting the public’s health, advocating for public policies that protect and improve the health of all Ohioans, strengthening the public health system, and advancing the practice of public health in Ohio.
Make yourself heard, call your legislators, speak up against social injustice and promote health equity. Contribute to addressing the social determinants of health by becoming active in local zoning, planning, education, housing, workforce development, and other non-traditional public health issues to make sure that policy decisions are viewed through a public health lens.
As an association, we have a seat at the table with ODH leadership, and a voice in the legislature, but as individuals we have the power of hundreds of voices who can advocate for public health at the local, state, and national level. Make yourself heard, because You are Public Health!