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NYAM and NYU Host Conference on Maintaining a Public Health Agenda During Political Change

 Dr. Jo Ivey Boufford, Dr. Thomas Farley, Dr. Cheryl Healton

On September 20, 2013, NYAM and the NYU Global Institute of Public Health hosted the conference “Maintaining a Public Health Agenda During Political Change.” Individuals from various organizations including city agencies, academic institutions, hospitals, and advocacy groups gathered at NYAM to hear panels of experts focus on New York City, Los Angeles, and national perspectives. The panels explored the national progress on pursuing a “health in all policies” agenda in big cities, the ways in which federal policy can support or create obstacles to this progress, and the ways in which two cities with a strong leadership commitment to a health agenda seek to maintain the momentum for health improvement.

The nation, with the passage of the Accordable Care Act, is on the verge of a game-changing transformation in policy and funding practices that can facilitate increased investments in addressing important determinants of health in communities beyond personal health care, but strong forces remain opposed. NYC and LA represent examples of cities that have experienced rapid improvement in key health indicators through bold steps to improve health. LA just experienced a leadership transition with the election of a new mayor, and NYC is about to experience a transition as well. The conference was aimed at exploring the risks of losing hard-won gains in public health during periods of political transition and how such risks can be mitigated.

NYAM President Jo Ivey Boufford, MD and Cheryl Healton, DrPH, MBA, NYU’s Dean of Public Health and Director of the NYU Global Institute of Public Health, introduced the event and moderated the panels. The featured presenters included keynote speaker Robert Pestronk, Executive Director of the National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO); Thomas Farley, MD, MPH, Commissioner of the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene; Jonathan E. Fielding, MD, MPH, MBA, Director of Public Health and Health Officer, Los Angeles County; and Jeff Levi, PhD, Executive Director of the Trust for America’s Health.  Themes emerged on the importance of evidence, resources, relationships, and leadership to sustaining the public health agenda.

The full conference was streamed live online, and the archived webcast (with shortcuts to individual panels and portions of the event) is available for viewing here.

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Posted on September 26, 2013

Gina Ravosa
Director of Marketing & Communications
The New York Academy of Medicine
1216 Fifth Avenue
New York, NY 10029
(212) 822-7285


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