In most developed nations around the world, public health is something we take for granted. While the services and policies of public health organizations may vary significantly from country to country, the premise behind a public health system is fairly standard. Public health systems strive to ensure that the community they serve has access to required health resources and that threats to the health of the public are monitored and prevented.

Most of us understand this basic premise about public health. But, here are some facts about public health you might not know. Now’s a good time to test yourself on your knowledge of how public health systems work.

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Public health is a hot topic, especially with the debate over healthcare in the U.S. However, national epidemics such as obesity, international issues such as Lyme Disease and Malaria and environmental topics that affect health — such as water and air pollution — remain at the top of the interest list. The following top 25 up-and-coming public health blogs, written since June 2009, tackle these topics and more in their blog entries. (more…)

Web applications are a great way to stay in touch on the go or to make life in your home office easily. No matter how you access the web, there are applications out there that you can use to make life more organized, more informed and more fun. Here are nineteen web applications you’ll love if you’re a public health professional.

For the Android

  1. Fast Food Calorie Counter: Know exactly how many calories you’re consuming when you give into fast food. This app tracks and provides data for almost 9000 menu items from 72 fast food restaurants. Track calories, fat fiber, carbs and protein.
  2. Calorie Counter by FatSecret: This calorie counter is simple to use. It can also figure out the recommended daily calorie intake you need based on your weight and fitness goals. It has a bar code scanner to make finding foods really easy.
  3. BMI Calculator: Calculate your Body Mass Index quickly and easily. Great for dieters.
  4. Nutrition Tips: Get tips on making your food work for you.
  5. Vitamins and Minerals: Help improve your nutrition by learning which vitamins and minerals do what, as well as learning which foods contain the ones you’re looking for.
  6. Cancer Preventing Food: Learn the foods that have been linked to cancer prevention.
  7. Control of Communicable Diseases Manual:This app includes the latest on identifying, managing, and preventing hundreds of infectious diseases, as well as public health news feeds and links to journal abstracts and citations. This is the most widely recognized reference for public health workers.
  8. Pathology and Disease:This application is a great way to learn more about the diseases that are spreading in your area. It allows you to learn all about disease processes. This is a great application for all healthcare professionals.
  9. Infectious Diseases:This application for your Android is a great teaching too for helping users learn more about communicable diseases.
  10. Pandemic Flu Guide: This application will give you all the information you need to ensure you’re prepared in the event of a flu pandemic.
  11. Health News: Get all the health news you need including alerts about disease outbreaks with this android app.

For the iPhone

  1. WhereTraveller: Updates security wait times at airports, and provides information on your destination such as restaurants, entertainment and shopping, as well as airline and rental car agency phone numbers.
  2. OmniFocus: This task management application allows you to create to do lists, as well as sync with documents on your desktop.
  3. ExpenseTrkr: Perfect for tracking expenses while you travel, this app even has the ability to document receipts via the phone’s camera function. Great for keeping track of business expenses.
  4. Outbreaks Near Me: This application is based on health map and is being used regularly by medical professionals to track the H1N1 flu outbreaks. The application was created by researchers at Children’s Hospital in Boston with help from MIT. This app is also available for the Android.
  5. Influenza (H1N1) Tracker: Much like Swine Flu News Tracker, this application is specifically for informing about H1N1. This app breaks information down by country. However, within the US, you can also get it broken down by state, and includes the assessment level offered by the World Health Organization.
  6. FDA Mobile: Information on this app comes directly from the US Food and Drug Administration. This application delivers disease outbreak information straight to your phone, as well as allowing you to search for other information from the FDA, such as food warnings and drug interactions. You can even find out when the latest medical treatments and devices get FDA approval.
  7. CDC News Reader: This is all the outbreak information you need to know, straight from the Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta. Essentially, it sends you the latest news reports coming out of the CDC, including disease outbreaks, emergency preparedness and travel notices.
  8. PEPID Tracker:You’ll find out all the disease related information you need to know with this iPhone application. This is a great application for people who travel, because you can see what’s going on in the part of the world you’re traveling to. This application is also available for your Android.

Public Health is known as science of protecting and improving health of communities through education, promoting health lifestyles, and doing research for diseases and injury prevention. As a professional into public health you analyze effects on health of genetics, persona choice, and environment in order to develop programs that protect the health of family and community as a whole. So a person should learn more about public health for following reasons.

  1. Biostatisticians Purposes:  After learning about Public health for the bio- statistician purposes, you would be able to identify health cycles which can help in improving life saving measures with the inducement of life saving measures by the application of statistical procedures, techniques, and methodology. This helps in identifying health trends within community. Biostatics is also used in co-ordination with epidemiology.
  2. For Health Education: By learning about public health you can help in preventing in spread of sexually transmitted diseases like as herpes and HIV/ AIDS, can help youth to understand ill effects of binge drinking. More you can develop community wide education programs that range from promoting health lifestyles for preventing disease and injury and having understanding of complex health issues.
  3. Health Services Administration/Management: More you can have learning in public health as to develop capacity to work as in capacity of health service administration manager for handling database at school clinic, developing budgets for health department, creating policies for health insurance companies and directing hospital services. The area of health services administration includes politic, business and science in managing the human and fiscal resources to deliver effectively public health services.
  4. Maternal and Child Health Purposes: The learning of public health helps you to access have information as access to birth control, promotion of health of a pregnant woman and unborn child. Professionals in maternal and child health can improve the public health delivery systems precisely in women, children and their families by medium of advocacy, education and research.
  5. Nutrition Purposes: Learning public health helps you in understanding healthy eating and regular exercises. It also helps to understand effect of diet on the elder persons, tells about ill effects of overeating and over dieting and working nature of public health nutritionists.  Learning Public health also helps to understand how food and nutrients make an impression over wellness and lifestyle of population.

There are many official and non official health care institutions which run around to care people by forming policies related to health care and than implementing it. However, the whole crux of these policies lies with the person who handles and evolves theses health care policies. Below are mentioned some of the known health care officials who under their supervision paid to the cause of public health.

  1. McNamara: He headed the World Bank during the period April 1968 to June 1981. Under his leadership, the World Bank focused attention towards targeted poverty reduction with special attention on health, food and education projects. World Bank is currently running a scholarship program under his name. Under his initiative World Bank funded five population projects as to carry out the five population projects in Family Welfare Program, a family planning cum Maternity and Child care (MCH) program.
  2. Lee Jong WooK: Born on 12th April 1945 in Seoul, South Korea, he was the Director General of World Health Organization. He obtained the medical degree from Seoul National University. He was appointed into WHO in 1983, working on a number of projects involving the Global Programme for Vaccines and Immunizations and Stop Tuberculosis.  He was posthumously given the Hibiscus Cordon (Grand Cross) of the Order of Civil Merit by the South Korean government.
  3. Dr. Mirta Roses Periago: She is an Argentinian epidemiologist and since 2009, she is a Director of the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO).   She received a medical degree in 1969 from Universidad Nacional de Cordoba, Aegentina and other qualifications like tropical medicine, public health, and epidemiology at other institutions in Argentina. She is the first female director of PAHO and better known for developing work philosophy and partnerships for defenses of health thus to achieve improvements in the health situations of the countries.
  4. Sir Edwin Chadwick:  Born on January 24, 1800 he was an English social reformer known for his work to reform the Poor Laws and improve sanitary conditions and public health. He was firm believer of savior of public health with respect to saving money.  As his contributions to public health, he was Commissioner of Sewers in London from 1848 to 1849; he also decorated the seat of Commission of Sewers in London from 1848 to 1849.
  5. Dr Margaret Chan: Born in 1947 in Hong Kong, she is a Director General of the World Health Organization since November 8 2006 and would decorate the seat till 2012. She is known for able handling of 1997 H5N1 avian influenza outbreak and 2003 SARS outbreak in Hong Kong.  She was credited for brining the epidemic under control by the slaughter of 1.5 million chickens in the region.

There are many challenges that come with public health of which professionals are now going through. Such challenges include the infectious diseases which are rampant and spread fast. Through a public health program, such challenges can be faced out globally. The online Masters in Public Health has offered an opportunity to both men and women to advance their career options without having to experience the classroom set up. This means that they can continue in their various aspects of life such as their career while getting education opportunities at their convenience.

The online Masters in Public Health degree is wide with programs designed for health care professionals who can accommodate the demanding schedule. The curriculum is extensive and covers all public health competencies related to the public health sector. This curriculum will involve studies such as biostatistics, community health, environmental health, social and behavioral sciences among others. The online Masters in Public Health gives you a feel of the real world with adequate skills and knowledge that promotes community wellness, prevention of diseases and sound health. It is only through adequate training that you will be able to impact the community positively to make it a better place.

The Masters in Public Health is internationally recognized and is appropriate for people who are working in primary care trusts, health and local authorities and service providers related to the health sector such as hospitals and clinics.  The duration of an online MPH will, at most, take up two years with a flexible option of extending it to a 5year term. This will however apply only to its residents.

The advantage of the online MPH is that it saves a lot of time and energy. For the elderly learners, there is a sense of comfort that is advanced since they do not have to share common lecture halls with a much younger group. The online Masters in Public Health offers flexibility to its students as they can learn at their own convenient time. There is no strict timetable to be adhered to.

However, an online Masters in Public Health has its own limitations. It requires some form of discipline from the individual. It will also require that you be a good time manager so that you can plan your time appropriately. Unlike in the class set up, online does not have the provision for monitoring. You are your own responsibility.