American Public Health Association
800 I Street, NW • Washington, DC 20001-3710
(202) 777-APHA • Fax: (202) 777-2534 •

Public Health Nursing
Section Newsletter
Annual Meeting 2007

Message from the Chair

Debra Gay Anderson, PhD, APRN, BC


It is hard to believe that yet another year has passed by and we will soon be coming together in Washington, D.C. for APHA’s 135th Annual Meeting, “Politics, Policy, and Public Health.”  Everything is political. We all know this truism, although we often deny or fail to speak that truth. Our altruism leads us to believe that decisions be made for the greater good.  After all, is that not what we learned in our public health nursing classes? We should look out for the common good, the greatest good for the greatest number of people. Social justice is the foundation of public health and public health nursing.


The American Public Health Association has promoted social justice and has been a mover and a shaker on Capitol Hill in the drive to eliminate health disparities. Congress has heard the voices of public health nurses, and the voices of many other Americans.  Both the House and Senate have passed legislation to renew and expand the State Children’s Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) that is essential to providing health care for children living in low-income families. New York Times columnist Paul Krugman, citing a recent Georgetown University poll, indicated that 9 in 10 Americans — including 83 percent of self-identified Republicans — support an expansion of SCHIP.  Our legislators have recognized the will of the public to provide health coverage for our most vulnerable, our children. This proposed expansion also has the support of the nation’s Democratic and Republican governors, the American Medical Association, and key lobbying groups representing several private insurance companies.


President Bush, however, is not listening to the public, health care professionals, the insurance industry, or even leaders in his own party.  Instead, he has chosen to play ideological hardball and has vetoed to renew the SCHIP legislation that is so vital for the health of our nation’s children. This health bill has funding built into it via a cigarette tax increase, but it is apparent that funding is not the real issue at stake. Rather, President Bush has stated that he does not want socialized medicine in the United States. SCHIP is not socialized medicine, it is a health insurance program that has successfully provided real access to health care for many of our uninsured children, instead of “… just going to an emergency room.”  The U.S. House of Representatives has scheduled a vote on October 18 to override President Bush's veto.  I urge you to write, call, and email your Representatives and Senators to urge them to override this presidential veto.  Last month I urged you to present your Congressional leaders with the facts and issues facing our clients. You did and they responded. However, our work is not finished.  As Public Health Nurses, advocates for the poor, uninsured and unrepresented, we have an obligation to make our voices heard for the health of a population that has no political power.  That is our calling, to advocate for the most vulnerable in our society.


I hope that many of you will join your public health nursing colleagues in Washington, D.C.  I invite you to participate in our dialogue and debate as we address the health needs of America’s vulnerable populations, especially as we develop effective strategies that will guide us in the elimination of health disparities.  Washington, D.C. is the perfect venue for these conversations. Begin with Advocacy Training on Saturday morning and continue with visits on “The Hill” to meet with your congressional representatives or their legislative aides, become educated in the process and then put that process to work for the greater good.


It is not coincidental that the theme of the 135th Annual Meeting in Washington, D. C. is Politics, Policy and Public Health, and that a great many abstract submissions were related to advocacy.  Using the key word “advocacy,” I searched the annual meeting’s online program.   I had 466 hits! Public Health Nursing is ready to rock D.C. with Politics, Policy and Public Health.  Please join us in this exciting work!



A Portrait of the Nation’s Uninsured Children


9 million -  Number of uninsured children in the United States.

3.4 million -   Number of uninsured children who are white, non-Hispanic.

3.3 million - Number of uninsured children who are Hispanic.

1.6 million -  

Number of uninsured children who are black.

670,000 - Number of uninsured children of other racial and ethnic backgrounds.


90% - Percentage of uninsured children that come from families where at least one parent works.

74% -    Percentage of uninsured children eligible for SCHIP or Medicaid but not enrolled.

50%   Percentage of two-parent families of uninsured children in which both parents work.

15% - Percentage of uninsured children in families with incomes over 300 percent of the federal poverty level who are ineligible for Medicaid and SCHIP.

11% - Percentage of uninsured children in families not eligible for Medicaid or SCHIP with incomes below 300% of the federal poverty level who cannot afford to purchase private health coverage.



Sources: Kaiser Commission on Medicaid and the Uninsured, Campaign for Children’s Health Care, Dubay L et al.

Local Arrangements Committee Prepares for 2007 Annual Meeting

November is approaching quickly. We are looking forward to seeing all of you next month for the annual APHA convention at the Washington, DC Convention Center.


Many activities are planned for the nursing section beginning with the Quad Council presentation on Sunday, November 4, from 5:00-6:30 PM. All attendees are invited to attend this session. Please register in advance, however there is no fee to attend.


The annual Public Health Nursing Section luncheon is scheduled for Tuesday, November 6, from 12:30-2:00 PM. This program features the presentation of various nursing achievement awards. Tickets are required for this event. If you do not purchase tickets prior to this event, you can buy them onsite at the meal-ticket booth in the registration area of the Washington Convention Center. We recommend getting your tickets early. This luncheon sells out!


Also on Tuesday, November 6, a Student Reception, combined with the Public Health Nursing Town Hall, will take place from 6:00- 8:00 PM. During the evening, we will recognize students and discuss public health nursing topics with public health nursing leaders. Refreshments will be provided.


Please stop by the Public Health Nursing Section - Booth #242 in the exhibit hall and pick up information on opportunities and activities of the APHA public health nursing section. There will be items to purchase to remember your time here.


We look forward to meeting you. The committee has worked hard to assure a memorable visit to the Nation’s Capitol!


Rita Munley Gallagher, PhD, RN

Rita J. Lourie, MSN, MPH, RN

Irene Sandvold, DRPH, CNM, FACNM


Local Arrangements Committee Co-Chairs



Development Committee Funds

PHN Section Annual Meeting Events


The Development Committee has been meeting by conference call to assist the Local Arrangements Committee with planning and fundraising. The annual fundraising letter was distributed to over 750 nursing school deans and directors across the country to secure funding for the PHN section. In addition, the Development Committee is developing planning guidelines that can facilitate future planning at the local level based on lessons learned.


Demetrius J. Porche, DNS


PHN Section Leadership Election Results

Congratulations to our newly elected PHN Section leadership who will take office at the conclusion of the 2007 APHA 135th Annual Meeting!


Beth F Lamanna, WHNP, MPH, RN



Judy Gibson, MSN, BSN, RN


Section Council                                                                                         

Anne E, Belcher DNS, MSN, PNP, BSN

Alexandra A. Garcia, PhD, RN, APRN-BC


Governing Council      

Theresa Heaton, MPH, BSN

Vanessa Nelson Hill, MS, RN

David J. Reyes, MN, MPH, RN

Register and Vote Absentee






Come - Be A Part of the National Solution

Before you run off to see the Capitol Steps perform, come join us for a great discussion on Reaffirming the Standard for Public Health Nursing. This Quad Council Session to be held on Sunday, November 4th from 5 – 6:30 PM, will explore the need for a recommitment to Baccalaureate education as the foundation for public health nursing practice and will present perspectives and action priorities in education, practice, research and policy. We need your input as we mobilize to make this standard a reality for public health nursing. See you on Sunday evening.


Note to self: holding an office in the PHN Section has some wonderful benefits


As my calendar fills up with meetings, I shudder to think of what will become of my free time. In the last two weeks, however, I have been involved in two great sessions held here in Washington, DC. For now, I’d like to tell you about one that will provide you with terrific resources to use in women’s health in your communities and organizations.


I don’t know what the acronym FDA means to you, but to me it always meant assuring safe food, drugs and cosmetics. My horizons were broadened when I attended a focus group run by the FDA Office of Women’s Health (OWH). The mission of this federal office is to “serve as a champion for women's health both within and outside the agency”. Working to reduce gender disparities in testing and regulation and to establish partnerships that promote women’s health objectives, the OWH sought input on how to get the word out about the free women’s health resources available to all. Their program, Take Time to Care, provides women—caretakers of parents, spouses, friends, children, communities—with scientifically-based but easy to read health information. Not only are the materials written in plain English, but they are also available in many languages, having been created in multiple languages, rather than just translated. Highlighting topics such as heart disease, menopause and using medications wisely, the site is a wonderful resource for consumers and providers. So, check it out. Have a great time finding what your communities need at: And, don’t forget to consider running for PHN Section office. You never know what you might discover.


Jeanne Matthews, PhD, RN


Feedback Needed on AACN Essentials for Baccalaureate Education

The AACN Task Force on the Revision of the Essentials for Baccalaureate Nursing Education has completed the first draft revision of the document that outlines the expected competencies of graduates of baccalaureate nursing programs. The revised document is available for review and comment at  .   All stakeholders can comment on the document, and it is important that feedback is received from the public health nursing community.   Comments can be directed in writing to Kathy McGuinn, AACN's Director of Special Projects, at


There is also an opportunity to give 'in person' feedback at regional meetings through April 2008. These meetings will give stakeholders the opportunity to review and provide feedback regarding the Essentials, including the end-of-program competencies. Deans and directors from AACN member institutions, faculty, practice partners, and representatives of other healthcare and education organizations are invited to attend. Upcoming meetings are scheduled for November 2-3 in Savannah, GA; January 15-16 in Tucson, AZ; March 13-14 in Nashville, TN; and April 24-25 in Boston, MA. For more information go to

Emergency Preparedness and Response for Health Educators

A new, electronic newsletter focusing on emergency preparedness and response is now available for health educators.  Produced biweekly by the Society for Public Health Education, “Emergency Preparedness and Response News U Can Use,” highlights the latest information on both natural and man-made disasters.


Whether you are working directly on an emergency response team or not – ALL HEALTH EDUCATORS SHOULD BE READY TO RESPOND TO THEIR CONSTITUENCIES AT SOME LEVEL IN AN EMERGENCY.


This FREE resource includes:


n  Latest alerts and news items of interest

n  New resources on risk communication and emergency response

n  Calendar of upcoming training opportunities, events

n  Job opportunities

n  Latest funding opportunities


Topic areas highlighted include: Influenza, Bioterrorism, Natural Disasters, and more.


The e-newsletter is available to both SOPHE members and non-members alike: SOPHEEmergencyHealthNews.pdf


If you are interested in being added to the newsletter list – or  learn more about what SOPHE is doing related to emergency preparedness and response -- contact Tanya Maslak at

Tell Your Story

Rita Lourie, RN, MSN, MPH is conducting 5-minute video interviews with Public Health Nurses who want to tell their stories, their finest accomplishments, their visions of the future or their most successful advocacy initiative.  Stories will be uploaded to You Tube, then linked to the APHA PHN web site! A copy can be sent to participants as well.


To make an appointment at APHA contact Rita Lourie by cell phone (215) 435-5854. After the annual meeting Rita may be reached at (610) 348-9695.  Let's put PHN's on the map, on the tube and on the web!

Become A PHN Section Member Now

Not a member of APHA or

Public Health Nursing Section?


Community Health Nursing Faculty Recruitment

Applications are being accepted for faculty to teach courses in Community Health Nursing at San Diego State University, School of Nursing.

Minimum of a master's degree in the subject field required, doctorate preferred. University teaching, clinical practice or administrative experience and scholarly achievement in research and publication recommended.

Salary commensurate with qualifications and experience according to University personnel policies. Salary will depend upon number of units taught, prorated at the full-time current academic salary scale.

For more information go to:

Thank you from the Chair

This year has been incredible! The opportunity to get to know so many of you as we have done the work of the Public Health Nursing Section has been the highlight of my role as chair. Thank you for all of the work you do for Public Health Nursing.  I hesitate to name names for fear of leaving out someone but I am going to mention two phenomenal women who have kept me on track throughout the year - Marjorie Buchanan, Immediate Past Chair, was always available for questions and advice; and Jeanne Matthews, Chair-Elect, who offered her assistance and expertise numerous times. I cannot thank you enough.

Then there is the work of others reflected throughout this newsletter - the Program Co-Chairs and their team of reviewers, the Local Arrangements Committee, the many committee chairs and members who do the work of the Section on a daily basis, the Newsletter team who so patiently reminded us of articles to write and drop dead due dates J, the Development Committee that has been tireless in efforts to secure funding for our PHN business meetings and special events at the Annual Meeting, our webmaster extraordinaire, our liaisons to other Sections, the Section Councilors, the Governing Councilors (who are busy reviewing resolutions as you read this message), and you the membership who would rally whenever a request went out for representation at a meeting. The thousands (yes, thousands) of emails that have floated through my inbox and back out again attest to the activity of the PHN Section!

It has been my privilege this past year to serve as Chair of the Public Nursing Section.

Thank you!

- Debra Gay Anderson, PhD, APRN, BC