This morning I’m off to the campus of Oregon State University in Corvallis to attend the Oregon Public Health Association’s annual conference.
I’ve been invited by the Northwest Health Foundation (NWHF) to join a panel discussion titled, New Partners in the Movement to Re-frame “Public Health”. The NWHF is behind the Community Health Priorities project, which is an exciting effort working to “Stimulate public conversation about health in our communities” (among other things).
In a nutshell, the project aims to re-brand public health issues into things people think and care about everyday — instead of only when they hear about restaurant health inspections or hand-washing signs in the bathroom.
A few months ago, myself and two other Oregonians (Tammy Bray, Dean of the College of Health and Human Services at Oregon State University; and Andrea Durbin, Executive Director of the Oregon Environmental Council) were chosen to be part of an educational campaign by Community Health Priorities.
Coincidentally, one of the two panel discussions at yesterday’s Transportation Safety Summit was about how public health and transportation policy can and should be more tightly integrated.
Lillian Shirley, the director of the Multnomah County Health Department, urged us to find ways to form strong partnerships when the goals of transportation and health policy “contribute to each other”.
She also shared a quote from author and noted health expert Howard Frumkin who said, “good transportation policy is a vaccine that can cure many diseases”.
I couldn’t agree more.
For more on the Community Health Priorities project, check out their website (you can also read an in-depth interview I did with them back in July).