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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2009, 6(11), 2843-2848;

Public Health and Nursing: A Natural Partnership

University of Cincinnati College of Nursing, 3110 Vine St., Cincinnati, OH 45221, USA
Johns Hopkins School of Nursing, Baltimore, MD 21205, USA
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 15 October 2009 / Accepted: 6 November 2009 / Published: 16 November 2009
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nursing and Public Health)
Full-Text   |   PDF [299 KB, uploaded 19 June 2014]


The health of individuals occurs within the context of their environment and the other individuals they interact with in the communities they live in, work in and visit. Promoting the health of the public requires multiple strategies aimed at improving the environment, the health knowledge of groups and individuals, maintaining adequate food and water, and reducing the spread of disease. Many disciplines are needed to meet these goals, but the largest segment of the professional health work force required to meet these needs is nursing. Historically, nursing leaders in public health such as Florence Nightingale and Lillian Wald made significant inroads related to serious health issues because they were nurses. Today across the globe, nurses provide the key components of public health interventions including well baby care, health education, screening and immunization clinics, disaster management and emergency preparedness. With the growing nursing shortage in acute care settings, the brain drain of nurses from certain areas of the world, the shrinking public dollars for preventive health care, the nursing workforce needed to continue to provide these essential health care services is threatened. It is essential to put the spot light on nursing’s role in public health with the hopes of attracting more public funds and more nurses to provide these essential services. View Full-Text
Keywords: public health; nursing; health care workforce public health; nursing; health care workforce
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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Savage, C.; Kub, J. Public Health and Nursing: A Natural Partnership. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2009, 6, 2843-2848.

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