What is Public Health Authority?

Public health authority is the Constitutional and legal power that grants the field its ability to protect and promote the public's health and safety in agencies, through regulation, and more. Since public health authority the is foundation for the field, threats to public health's authority affects all types of public health work - epidemiology, health promotion and education, emergency management, community health work, and more.

"Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, backlash against public health authority is significantly limiting the ability of public health officials to do their job. Public health leaders have experienced personal threats, and many state legislatures have approved or are currently considering laws that would strip powers from local and state public health agencies. In many cases, these policy changes would diminish preparedness for future emergencies and worsen existing inequities in health and wealth." -ChangeLab Solutions

Watch ChangeLab Solution's 10-minute video to learn more about the source and scope of public health authority, the powers delegated to different levels of government, and the limits on those public health powers.

Oklahoma Public Health Association
121 NE 52nd Street, Ste. 260
Oklahoma City, OK 73105