Public Health Nursing

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The American Public Health Association's Public Health Nursing Section defines public health nursing as, "the practice of promoting and protecting the health of populations using knowledge from nursing, social, and public health sciences".1

ANA supports public health nursing in many ways.  First by policy, advocacy and education in multiple public health areas to include, but not limited to:  immunizations, infection prevention, environmental health, and emergency preparedness.  Second, ANA facilitates the review and revision of public health nursing's scope and standards of practice.  Additionally, ANA keeps nurses up to date on emerging public health issues such as Zika, Ebola, lead poisoning, and climate change. Finally, ANA supports the work of the Quad Council of Public Health Nursing Organizations (Quad Council) in various ways.

The Quad Council was established in the early 1980's to represent the interests of public health nursing, including education, practice, leadership, and research.2 Its membership has changed over the years and now includes the:

Take Action
Want to know more about public health nursing?  Contact any of the above Quad Council associations.
Interested in obtaining the credential of Advanced Public Health Nursing-Board Certified (APHN-BC)? Visit the Advanced Public Health Nursing Portfolio webpage to learn about the new assessment method used to determine ANCC board certification.


1American Public Health Association, Public Health Nursing Section.  (2013). The definition and practice of public health nursing: A statement of the public health nursing section. Washington, DC: American Public Health Association.

2 Quad Council of Public Health Nursing Organizations. (2011).  Quad Council competencies for public health nurses. Retrieved 3/24/16 at