Council for Public Health Nursing

A policy creating a public health nursing council was published in the Department of Health (DOH) administrative manual in April 1997. The policy stated that the purpose of the council was to address issues common to public health nursing across divisional lines and authorities. Responsibilities included evaluating and making recommendations for issues related to public health nursing responsibilities and roles, standards, training, and recruitment. Members were one nurse from each DOH division and center and two district nurses. In July 1997, the position of public health nursing liaison was created in the Center for Local Public Health Services. Duties of this position included implementation of the policy, development of the council, and serving as council chair. The first meeting of the Council of Public Health Nursing (CPHN) was in October 1997.

In 1999, the CPHN was restructured to include representatives from local public health agencies. Two standing committees were developed, one representing DOH and the other representing the Local Public Health Agencies (LPHA). The DOH committee was composed of one representative from each division, center and district. The LPHA committee was composed of one local public health agency nurse from each district. Members were asked to report CPHN activities to the areas they represent and also to bring issues impacting public health nursing practice to the attention of the CPHN. The LPHA nurses were also asked to communicate with LPHA nurses in their district by organizing meetings of LPHA nurses in their district. The purpose of these meetings was to share information and provide opportunities for networking, support and discussion of nursing issues.

In 2003, the CPHN was again restructured to include greater representation from local public health agencies and the addition of nursing educators. The leadership was assigned to an executive committee with a chair from a local public health agency. The Department of Health & Senior Services public health nursing liaison became an ex-offico member of the CPHN. At that time, the name was changed to Council for Public Health Nursing.

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