Are schools of public health needed to address public health workforce development in Canada for the 21st century?

Canadian journal of public health. Revue canadienne de sante publique

PubMedID: 16827418

Tulchinsky TH, Bickford MJ. Are schools of public health needed to address public health workforce development in Canada for the 21st century?. Can J Public Health. 2006;97(3):248-50.
In addition to establishing Canadian federal institutions for public health to work in cooperation with provincial and local health authorities, the infrastructure of public health for the future depends on a multi-disciplinary and well-prepared workforce. Traditionally, Canada trained its public health workforce in schools of public health (or hygiene), but in recent decades this has been carried out in departments and centres primarily within medical faculties. Recent public health crises in Canada have led to some new federal institutions and reorganization of public health activities as well as other reforms. This commentary proposes re-examination of the context of public health workforce training and especially for schools of public health as independent faculties within universities as in the United States or, as developed more recently in Europe, semi-independent schools within medical faculties. The multi-disciplinary nature of public health professionals and the complex challenges of the "New Public Health" call for a new debate on this vital issue of public health workforce development. Public health needs a new image and higher profile of training, research and service to meet provincial and national needs, based on international standards of accreditation and recognition.