December 21, 2005

The Texas Public Health Training Center received an additional five years of funding from the Bureau of Health Professions of the Health Resources and Services Administration within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

The center received $488,840 for refunding. It is a collaborative effort between the UNT Health Science Center School of Public Health, University of Texas at Houston School of Public Health, Texas A&M Universityâ??s School of Rural Public Health, and the Department of State Health Services.

Robert Galvan, DrPH, assistant professor of health management and policy at UNT Health Science Centerâ??s School of Public Health, is co-principal investigator for the center and will continue leading the training and collaborative efforts at the health science center. The training center is currently under the leadership of Virginia C. Kennedy, PhD, project director from the University of Texas Houston School of Public Health.

â??We are excited that this project was refunded by HRSA,â? Dr. Galvan said. â??The Texas Public Health Training Center has done an incredible job in the past five years of providing much needed training to public health professionals in areas across the state. We look forward to the next five years with a renewed sense of urgency in expanding our reach to the Texas public health workforce.â?

According to researchers at the center, 51 percent of Texasâ?? 254 counties are designated as whole county Health Professions Shortage Areas, meaning that a shortage of healthcare professionals exists in that area. Another 6 percent of the counties are designated as partial county HPSAs, and 18 percent are special population HPSAs.

â??We have an overriding imperative to address these shortages throughout the state by providing training and assistance to those counties that need it,â? Dr. Galvan said.

For the past five years, the center has addressed workforce training needs through the Department of State Health Services, local health departments and health-related organizations by conducting a variety of training opportunities across the state. In the last four years, the TPHTC has conducted more than 89 training activities, reaching more than 1,000 public health professionals.

The training topics have varied throughout the years and have addressed topics such as Public Health 101, Collaborative Leadership, Practical Evaluation for Public Health Programs, Public Health Law, Environmental Health Issues for Nurses, Isolation and Quarantine, Introduction to Epidemiology, Assessment Resource for Texas (CHART) and Other Web-Based Statistical Research Tools, and Crisis and Emergency Risk Communication to name a few.

Within the next five years, the center would like to increase the number of trainings delivered, focus on designing and implementing distance learning courses and increase the visibility of the training center.

For more information about the Texas Public Health Training Center, contact Elizabeth Trevino, DrPH, project coordinator at UNT Health Science Center, at (817) 735-0311.


Contact: Kay Colley 817-735-2553, cell 817-980-5090, e-mail kacolley@hsc.unt.edu.

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