The Value of Public Health Protection: Healthy Nation 2030

The first full week of April each year is National Public Health Week. An initiative of the American Public Health Association for 20 years, National Public Health Week aims to raise awareness of important public health protection initiatives and achievements. This year, the weekly theme is Healthy Nation 2030: a goal of creating the healthiest nation in one generation.

Public health is the science of protecting and improving the health of families and communities through detection and control of infectious diseases, research for disease and injury prevention, and the promotion of healthy lifestyles. Put simply, public health is concerned with protecting the health of populations. These populations can be as small as a local neighborhood, or as big as an entire country or region of the world.

Every day, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) protects Americans from health, safety and security threats, in this country and around the world. During the past year, the world has seen the value of CDC’s work through the agency’s response to the unprecedented Ebola epidemic in West Africa.

Each day of the week, CDC will highlight a different daily theme related to Healthiest Nation 2030:

  • Monday, April 6: Raising the Grade. To kick off NPHW 2015, the public health community will come together to talk frankly about what the data reveal about America’s public health.
  • Tuesday, April 7: Starting from Zip. During the second day of NPHW 2015, the public health community will shine a light on local/state/regional disparities. 
  • Wednesday, April 8: Building Momentum. On the third day of NPHW 2015, the public health community will outline major recent changes in influential leaders, companies and organizations that are taking important steps in line with creating the healthiest nation and what they mean for our health.
  • Thursday, April 9: Building Broader Connections. The fourth day will focus on communities mapping the network of partners and connections (city planners, education officials, public, private and for-profit organizations) needed in their areas to make the U.S. the Healthiest Nation in One Generation.
  • Friday, April 10: Building on 20 Years of Success. The accomplishments of the public health community over the last two decades are significant, such as a 25-year improvement in the average lifespan for Americans and a 70 percent reduction in HIV/AIDS-related deaths. During the fifth day of NPHW 2015, the public health community will come together to celebrate these and other accomplishments and bring a renewed focus to the work ahead—and what it will take to become the Healthiest Nation in One Generation.

While National Public Health Week comes around once a year, the CDC Foundation works every day to establish public-private partnerships that advance and strengthen CDC’s public health protection programs. We are proud of our work with CDC, and we salute CDC’s heroes who are on the frontlines 24/7 protecting our nation’s health. 

Natalie Duggan is a communications specialist for the CDC Foundation.