Public health nursing is the practice of promoting and protecting the health of populations using evidenced based practice. Public health nursing practice is focused on improving a population’s health through health promotion, disease prevention and risk reduction.

Public health nursing is a specialty practice within nursing and public health. The practice of public health nursing is a guided by the American Nurses Association Public Health Nursing: Scope & Standards of Practice and the Quad Council of Public Health Nursing Organization’s Core Competencies for Public Health Nurses.

Public Health Nursing Positions

The Vermont Department of Health employs approximately 55 public health nurses who are involved in all areas of public health including infectious disease control, school health, chronic disease prevention, immunizations and emergency preparedness. A bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) is recommended but is not a requirement for entry into practice for a public health nurse.

If you are interested in possible job opportunities, check the State of Vermont Career Center regularly.

Student Learning Opportunities & Internships

There are many opportunities for nursing students to work with the Vermont Department of Health. The Health Department currently has clinical agreements with the University of Vermont, Vermont Technical College, Norwich University, Castleton College and Rivier University (NH) that allow us to host nursing students for clinical experience in public health nursing. The State of Vermont also has an internship program that can be utilized for nursing.  If you are interested in nursing student or internship opportunities at the Vermont Department of Health please reach out to:

Margaret Robinson, Public Health Nursing Director

Additional Information on Public Health Nursing

Public Health Nursing is guided by:

    ANA Standards of Public Health Nursing Practice

    Core Competency for Public Health Nursing

    Essential Public Health Services

    The Principles of Public Health Nursing Practice

    Core Functions of Public Health Nursing

Public Health Nurse services or programs may be aimed at individuals, families, groups, communities or systems.  Additionally, public health nursing practice is not linked to any specific practice location but rather to the scope and focus of the work.   

Other resources relevant to public health nursing are:

Association of Public Health Nurses

American Public Health Association’s Public Health Nurse Section

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