A systems approach to public health workforce development

J Public Health Manag Pract. 2001 Jul;7(4):17-22. doi: 10.1097/00124784-200107040-00004.


During the 1990s, several distinct but interrelated efforts to strengthen the public health infrastructure were launched. Defining public health work in terms of core functions and essential services, these efforts focused on the competence of the workforce and the performance of public health agencies. The systems approach offered here highlights the relationships and interdependencies among these three components of public health practice: (1) the work, (2) the worker, and (3) the work setting. The model suggests that advances in public health workforce development may require major public health organizational development efforts.

MeSH terms

  • Competency-Based Education
  • Efficiency, Organizational
  • Humans
  • Models, Organizational
  • Professional Competence
  • Public Health / education*
  • Public Health Administration*
  • Public Health Practice
  • Staff Development / organization & administration*
  • United States
  • Workforce