The American Public Health Association Essay

1144 Words Feb 11th, 2016 null Page
The beginning of the 18th century saw incremental strives towards a reformed public health sector. Although the Board of Health was instituted in 1799, they still focused chiefly on sanitation measures, discounting the need for disease regulation. Despite rampant economic expansion throughout the United States from 1800–1850, public health knowledge was still crippled, representing a severe hindrance in economic growth, as widespread disease remained untreated. Peculiarly, medical practitioners were present throughout large municipalities; however, they were not recognized as possessing medical authority, and therefore, did not have significant influence in promoting disease prevention (Abel, 2010). In an attempt to radically reform public health – and by extension, the beginning works of organized healthcare – medical practitioners lobbied for state legislature, enacting licensing laws. Consequently, the American Public Health Association (APHA) was constituted in 1872, granting the opportunity for public health reforms (Bryce, 1918). Simultaneously, large municipalities established health departments as a means of forming an organized, systematic approach to controlling the spread of disease. Between 1867 and 1873, Chicago, Louisville, Indianapolis and Boston uniformly enacted health departments, displaying an evident change in the scope and intentions of public health in the United States (Toner, qtd. in Simile, 1947). Concurrently, the APHA and municipal health…

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