Public Health job description

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Public health is concerned with the assessment, monitoring and promotion of the health of the population. It deals not only with the prevention of health-related conditions, such as infectious diseases, but with ways to reduce the effects of existing problems, such as substance abuse
Those working in public health invariably have an MPH (master of public health), which is a multi-disciplinary degree in public health practice available from a number of schools of public health, schools of public affairs and medical schools throughout the world. Graduates are able to work in areas such as education, policy, community practice, research and administration
Qualified medical professionals with at least a year’s clinical experience often make the transition to public health. These positions, which offer salaries in the region of £25,000 – 38,000, allow a greater understanding of the way the NHS works, as well as providing the opportunity to play a more active role in profiling the health of the nation. With full membership of the Faculty of Public Health, doctors are also able to gain employment as health consultants, whose annual salaries average £85,000. Other positions include manager (£35,000), engineer (£25,000) and analyst (£31,000).

Description

Managing and protecting a community’s way of life. From possible health risks is the responsibility of a Public Health professional. They utilise their knowledge of disease control, health and safety guidelines and research. They may work at the local, government or international level.
They examine the policies that are currently in place and make recommendations, implement better strategies or make emergency decisions to handle problems. Persons who specialise in Science, Chemistry, Mathematics, Biostatistics, Epidemiology, Business and Management can work in Public Health. These professionals are involved in some of the breakthroughs in communicable and social diseases. The salary and benefits in this sector is very competitive.
A Public Health professional usually performs many of the following tasks:
• Conducting assessments
• Analysing data
• Generating ideas and solutions
• Implementing strategies
• Regulating and managing agencies
• Dealing with medical professionals

Skills

• Being a change agent
• Being dependable and motivated
• Communication and presentation
• Efficiency and patience
• Having a good work ethic
• Management and leadership
• Organisation and multitasking
• Public health and safety
• Research and analysing data
• Strategising and planning
• Stress management and resolving problems
• Team work and professionalism

Education

Public Health professionals may be one of the more diverse sectors in terms of qualifications. These workers may study areas such as:
•    Behavioural Science/Health Education
•    Biostatistics
•    Emergency Medical Services
•    Environmental Health
•    Epidemiology
•    Health Services Administration/Management
•    International/Global Health
•    Maternal and Child Health
•    Nutrition
The time that is required to complete the studies in these courses will differ as they may take up to four or more years. Even with these various courses, persons can opt to take a course like the Masters of Public Health.

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