Hello and welcome to the Mississippi Public Health Association. My name is Kaye Bender and it is my pleasure to serve as the Executive Director of MPHA beginning in May 2020. I am so pleased to be here and look forward to working with all of you as we continue the wonderful 75-year legacy of our Association in its efforts to improve the health of the citizens of Mississippi. Our mission continues to be to promote public and personal health and to promote the development of the public health workforce through advocacy and education.
Public health is a vital component of our health care system that touches the lives of all Mississippians. MPHA strives to provide leadership in communicating the importance of public health by educating the public, our policy makers and health professionals across the State. We have a strong and capable Board of Directors who leads the organization as we consider what we can do to support the work of public health professionals all across the state.
An Institute of Medicine report defined public health as what society must do to keep people healthy and further defined it as involving the collection of data, assessment of challenges, and assurance of health protection. They described it as collective action leading to collective impact. That is what MPHA wishes to do, engage all of us collectively to positively impact the health of Mississippians.
We need your help in building on the wonderful accomplishments that MPHA has already achieved in strengthening our infrastructure, developing strong partnerships, supporting the development of our public health workforce, diversifying and increasing our membership and advocating for improvements in public health policies and funding. All of that work takes time and a commitment from those of us who love public health and want to see it grow and be strengthened in our state.
We invite you to explore our website, talk with our members and to join us so that we can provide a larger voice for public health in Mississippi and together can make that collective impact on the health of our state. Whether it is in protecting our communities through disease surveillance, ensuring a safer environment, promoting healthy lifestyles and healthy communities or providing education and research, public health is… your first line of defense.
We hope you will join us and be a part of MPHA’s advocacy, education and public health leadership efforts in Mississippi. We want to hear from YOU!
Kaye Bender, PhD, RN, FAAN
Executive Director, MPHA