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Teaching Health Departments: Meeting the Challenge of Public Health Education

Schlaff, Anthony L.; Robbins, Anthony

Journal of Public Health Management and Practice: September-October 2009 - Volume 15 - Issue 5 - p 439–442
doi: 10.1097/PHH.0b013e3181a7a679
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Since the 1988 Institute of Medicine report The Future of Public Health, educators and practitioners have sought to better prepare students for practice. A review of these efforts suggests that they have yet to achieve an adequate synthesis of academic and practice-based education. The authors argue that a fundamental change in the structure of pubic health agencies is required so that all public health students receive practice training in teaching health departments. Academic programs must partner with these agencies but must also continue to teach students about the intellectual framework of public health.

This study aims to bring a fundamental change in the structure of pubic health agencies so that all public health students receive practice training in teaching health departments.

Anthony L. Schlaff, MD, MPH, is Director, MPH Program, and Associate Clinical Professor, Public Health and Family Medicine, Department of Public Health and Family Medicine, Tufts University School of Medicine, Boston, Massachusetts.

Anthony Robbins, MD, MPA, is Professor, Public Health, Tufts University School of Medicine, and Coeditor, Journal of Public Health Policy, Department of Public Health and Family Medicine, Tufts University School of Medicine, Boston, Massachusetts.

Corresponding Author: Anthony L. Schlaff, MD, MPH, Department of Public Health and Family Medicine, Tufts University School of Medicine, 136 Harrison Ave, Boston, MA 02111 (anthony.schlaff@tufts.edu).

© 2009 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.