Public Health Advocacy

OPHA 2022 Policy Agenda

Reduce the Impact of Tobacco on Public Health

This priority area includes mitigating several tobacco industry influences in Oklahoma state laws by:

  • removing current exemptions on clean air laws
  • repealing pre-emption
  • keeping youth from being introduced to the criminal justice system for purchase, use, or possession of tobacco
  • increasing the cost of retail tobacco licenses
  • requiring a state excise tax and retail licensing system for vaping products comparable to other tobacco products

Champion Mental and Behavioral Health

This priority area includes preventing and mitigating adverse mental and behavioral health outcomes by:

  • promoting appropriations for adverse childhood events (ACEs) and trauma-informed training in schools
  • supporting the launch and long-term implementation of 9-8-8, the crisis response phone number
  • advocating for harm reduction programming

Advance Maternal and Child Health

This priority area includes improving access to maternal care and enhancing childhood vaccine reporting processes by:

  • supporting legislation to improve access to licensed/certified midwifery services
  • establishing policies for reporting all vaccines administered to the Oklahoma State Immunization Information System (OSIIS)
  • expanding postpartum health insurance coverage

Improve Food Literacy and Access to Healthy Foods

This priority area includes championing policies that decrease food insecurity and food deserts by:

  • removing the state sales tax on healthy foods and strengthening local food infrastructures
  • improving nutrition education and food literacy

Strengthen Health Infrastructure

This priority area includes supporting funding and policy necessary to develop strategies to strengthen the public health and health care workforce by:

  • improving rural provider coverage
  • expanding community health workers (CHW) scope
  • following the recommendations of the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) and others by supporting implicit bias training for health care workers so they can provide appropriate, patient-centered care and reduce health disparities
  • investing in active transportation infrastructure and safe places (parks, trails, sidewalks, tracks)

    Our Mission

    OPHA's mission is to promote public health improvements through education, practice and advocacy. OPHA members and other individuals interested in public health advocacy can stay informed about legislative issues that may impact public health is by getting involved with the OPHA Public Policy Committee. Be sure to keep an eye out for updates through our newsletter and social media.

    Get Informed! 

    Oklahoma Legislation

    For more information, contact OPHA Public Policy Committee leader DJ McMaughan, Ph.D.

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

    The OPHA office is open Monday - Friday from 8:00 AM - 12:00 PM, excluding state holidays.