What is Public Health Nursing?Image of public health nurses

Public health nursing is the practice of promoting and protecting the health of populations using knowledge from nursing, social and public health sciences. Much of the work is conducted in the community, through home visits, community clinics and outreach, and other avenues.

A Public Health Nurse (PHN) understands the critical linkage between epidemiological data and clinical understanding of health and illness. PHN's have advanced degrees and are registered nurses.

Contact Public Health Nursing staff at (530) 621-6108

Areas of Public Health Nurse Expertise:

  • Monitoring of communicable diseases and disease trends
  • Immunizations Assessment of overall medical care (including medical home)
  • Physical assessment (height, weight, measurements) and well-child checks
  • Occupational health
  • Case management for high risk pediatric and obstetric clients
  • Medically fragile infants
  • Assessing for signs and symptoms of prenatal drug exposure
  • Developmental assessment (Denver II)
  • Breastfeeding support
  • School-aged and special needs children
  • Environmental assessment of home for health dangers
  • Lead poisoning prevention activities
  • Nutritional assessment: Includes senior nutrition, failure to thrive, calculating calorie/kg body weight

Public Health Nursing staff also provide community nursing services during a disaster, and consultation and presentations on health issues. Health Education Coordinators are trained outreach workers who team up with PHN's to assist families to meet particular health needs.