Policy Development

Policy Development highlight needs and gaps in the public health and health care systems, offers members a chance to learn about, and educate decision-makers about issues with potential for impact.  APHA influences policies and sets priorities on a broad set of issues, including children's health, access to care, environmental health, managed care, public health infrastructure, disease control, health disparities, bioterrorism, international health and tobacco control. APHA advocates for state and federal funding for health and professional education programs in public health. To get involved in policy development activities, review volunteer opportunities, and contact the activity chair or any of the members in the leadership roster.



When citizens are educated about an issue and the decision making process, it empowers them to get involved in helping to chart the direction of policy. The Community Health Planning and Policy Development (CHPPD) section Action Board liaison works with APHA members to sustain a vocal and noticeable presence at all levels of policy-making. This ensures public health professionals that vital public health programs and services are protected and supported - both fiscally and politically.


Archiving policies

The focus of the Policy Review and Archiving Process is on identifying policies that the Governing Council will vote to archive.  It also identifies policies that should be updated or combined into new policies submitted to the annual Policy Development Process. Policies approved for archiving by the Governing Council are noted as archived on the APHA Web site, and no longer guide APHA policy and practice, but serve as historical documents. 

Reviewing current policies

Section members provide critical feedback on current proposed APHA policies.  The Policy Process calendar offers guidance on the timeline for writing and reviewing policies. The policy development process for the Association is designed to be open to full participation of the membership, and to ensure careful review by appropriate APHA boards, committees and other membership entities. Public policy statements adopted through this process provide a record of the Association's stance on a variety of public health issues and reflect the diverse interests of the APHA membership.


Writing policies

New policy members are encouraged to contact the policy chair(s) to enlist support from within and outside the section about working on policies.