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An Academic-Public Health Department Partnership for Education, Research, Practice, and Governance

Akintobi, Tabia Henry PhD; Dawood, Nazeera MBBS, MPH, CCRC; Blumenthal, Daniel S. MD, MPH

Journal of Public Health Management and Practice: May/June 2014 - Volume 20 - Issue 3 - p 310–314
doi: 10.1097/PHH.0b013e31829dc256
Original Articles

Public health departments and medical schools are often disconnected, yet each has much to offer the other. There are 4 areas in which the 2 entities can partner; in Atlanta, Georgia, the Morehouse School of Medicine (particularly its Prevention Research Center or PRC) and the Fulton County Department of Health and Wellness have demonstrated partnership in each area. With respect to teaching, the 2 have collaborated on clerkships for medical students and rotations for preventive medicine residents. In research, Morehouse faculty and health department staff have worked together on projects. In service, the 2 entities have been able to put into practice interventions developed through their joint research efforts. In governance, the health department has a representative on the PRC board, while the PRC principal investigator serves on the Fulton County Board of Health. Benefits have accrued to both entities and to the communities that they serve.

This article describes an academic-public health department partnership in the areas of education, research, practice, and governance. It also discusses the strengths, weaknesses, and benefits it provides to its constituents.

Prevention Research Center (Dr Akintobi), Department of Community Health and Preventive Medicine (Dr Blumenthal), Morehouse School of Medicine, Atlanta, Georgia; and Fulton County Department of Health and Wellness (Dr Dawood), Atlanta, Georgia.

Correspondence: Daniel S. Blumenthal, MD, MPH, Department of Community Health and Preventive Medicine, 720 Westview Dr, Atlanta, GA 30310 (

This study was funded by the National Institutes of Health (UL1RR025008, Clinical and Translational Science Award; UL1TR000454, Clinical Research Center) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (U48DP000049, Health Promotion and Disease Prevention Research Center; U58DP000984, REACH [Racial and Ethnic Approaches to Community Health]; and U57CCU42068, Community Cancer Control).

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

© 2014 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.