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Letter From the Director: Celebrating 2014 and the Year Ahead

In this Letter from the Director, Tao Sheng Kwan-Gett, MD, MPH, reflects on NWCPHP and public health in 2014 and the exciting opportunities to come in 2015.

In this Letter from the Director, Tao Sheng Kwan-Gett, MD, MPH, reflects on NWCPHP and public health in 2014 and the exciting opportunities to come in 2015.

January 7, 2014

As we look back, 2014 was a momentous year for public health in our region and for the Northwest Center for Public Health Practice (NWCPHP). As public health continues to change and evolve, we have been developing new capacities at NWCPHP to fulfill our mission of promoting excellence in public health through linking academia with the public health practice community.

Health reform was and continues to be a powerful driver of change. NWCPHP is playing a leadership role in linking public health with health care. In 2014, we collaborated with the Northwest Regional Primary Care Association and the Community Health Associations of Mountains and Plains States to pilot a successful two-day workshop on primary care and public health integration and leadership in Denver, Colorado. NWCPHP received a grant award from the Office of the Assistant Secretary of Health to help evaluate and provide analytic support for the Snohomish Health Leadership Coalition. We devoted the 2014 issue of our newly redesigned Northwest Public Health magazine to the Affordable Care Act. And I was honored to serve on the Washington Public Health – Health Care Delivery System Partnership workgroup that developed the Washington Prevention Framework.

Last year was a time of innovation and change for NWCPHP in other ways as well. In 2014 we:

All of this is in addition to continuing the cutting edge training, evaluation, communication, and research activities that are the core of NWCPHP. Our Summer Institute enjoyed record enrollment, we graduated 31 scholars from our Public Health Management Certificate, and we debuted new online training offerings including our Texting for Public Health toolkit. We continue to offer our relevant and timely monthly Hot Topics in Practice webinar series. Finally, we expanded our community engagement activities, including a four-part public health lecture series at Town Hall Seattle, Health Matters.

2015 promises to be just as dynamic, with many new and refreshed offerings for our public health partners. Emerging leaders interested in our annual Northwest Public Health Leadership Institute will soon be able to enroll in this year’s cohort, which will include new content on public health and health care integration, as well as leadership training for the maternal and child health (MCH) workforce working with underserved and isolated populations. Those wanting a fresh take on Big Data and public health in our region will enjoy this spring’s Northwest Public Health magazine. Our new blog is slated to launch this year. And watch for more news about Healthier Washington, the state’s health care innovation plan—NWCPHP is excited to be the home of the evaluation component of the initiative, which will be complemented by UW faculty and graduate students, Group Health Research Institute (GHRI), the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME), and state agency experts.

We—NWCPHP, together with you, our trusted colleagues and collaborators—are public health. In this time of change, we innovate to connect public health with health care and the community. I’m grateful and excited to work with you in 2015 to promote excellence in public health practice.

Tao Kwan-Gett Signature

Tao Kwan-Gett, MD, MPH

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