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Northwest Center for Public Health Practice

Public Health Training, Research, and Evaluation for the Northwest

How Preparedness Resources Improve Local Public Health


This one-hour webinar, which is part of the Hot Topics series, features three public health practitioners from Montana: Stephanie Nelson, RN, MSN, Brigid O'Connor, RN, PHN, and Doug Moore, MD, MPH. Each describe a unique example of how preparedness resources have contributed to developing the skills, talents, capacity, and experience of a fully functioning health department. Nelson discusses how a rural community in Montana has formalized the relationship between the Health Department, Hospital, Community Health Center and University. O'Connor describes how emergency preparedness funds have enabled their health department to make technological advances through equipment purchases, hire additional staff, and dedicate staff to the local and tribal emergency response commissions. Moore covers the history of the Unified Health Command in Yellowstone County, its mission and objectives, and how it functions.

Learning Objectives

  • Describe how local public health systems can align resources to effectively address risks to the public's health
  • Identify steps to bring public health staff into successful health-based preparedness committees (e.g. TEPC/LEPC) and improve communication with providers and the community
  • Describe how a local service based health department can transition into a public health focused organization

Intended Audience

Public health professionals (state and local levels); Private healthcare providers and hospital professionals; State, Tribal, and Local Emergency Response Commissions (SERC/TERC/LERC) members; Key leaders in community healthcare


Stephanie Nelson, RN, MSN, is the Health Officer in Gallatin County Health Department. Her presentation, Using a Unified Approach to Align the Public Health System, will discuss how a rural community in Montana has formalized the relationship between the Health Department, Hospital, Community Health Center and University.

Brigid O'Connor, RN, PHN, has 17 years of experience as a community based nurse and is currently an Infectious Disease Nurse and Public Health Emergency Preparedness Coordinator at the Lake County Health Department.

Doug Moore, MD, MPH, has 25 years of public health experience and his areas of interest include mental health services in rural areas and the chronic care model. He is currently the Chief of Public Health Services and the Assistant Health Officer for Yellowstone City-County Health Department.

Screenshot of webinar slides.
Air Date: 
Tuesday, October 18, 2005, 12:00 pm to 1:00 pm PDT
Emergency Preparedness & Disasters
Leadership & Management
1 hour
Hot Topics in Practice
Competency Domains: 
Communication Skills
Community Dimensions of Practice Skills
Cultural Competency Skills