NHPHA's Webinars are made possible through a grant from the New England Public Health Training Center

mentor 5NHPHA Public Health Mentoring Program 2018-2019 Tutorial

Save the date for the New Hampshire Public Health Association Public Health Mentoring Program webinars in August! Tuesday, August 21 OR Wednesday, August 29. Tune in to learn the background and details of the new program and what it means to be a mentor. Hear from experienced mentor, Maria Bitanga, from the University of Minnesota who will share her firsthand mentoring experience. The webinar will conclude with a question and answer session. For specifics, email info@nhpha.org. Click here for the flyer with more information

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Social Determinants: Exploring Social Determinants of Health: from Data into Action to Advance Equity

Originally Aired Tuesday, May 1, 2018 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.

We know good health goes beyond medical care and is influenced by economic opportunity, affordable housing, and quality education - all factors that communities can transform.These "social determinants" of health are the focus of this talk, using data and evidence from the County Health Rankings and Roadmaps to learn how to strengthen community efforts to improve health outcomes. Hear the webinar by clicking here.

If you would like to receive CME's or CEU's for this webinar, please complete the post test, using the following link:


The NHPHA Board has approved a new organizational membership structure which now includes event sponsorship benefits. These updates are reflected on our website.

In addition to increasing the value of existing benefits, the new structure also gives organizational members, depending on their membership level, complimentary registration to NHPHA events, recognition at events, opportunities to speak at events, and even access to a student intern database and student intern stipends. These are just some examples of the added benefits to our organizational members. 

This new structure has been created in an effort to streamline the membership and sponsorship processes for our organizational members. 

Ashley Peters, Chair of the Membership Committee, will be reaching out to current organizational members to discuss these changes. Please feel free to reach out to Ashley Peters (Ashley.Peters@unh.edu) or Neil Twitchell, Chair of Programming Planning, (Neil.Twitchell@dhhs.nh.gov) with any questions about these changes
The New Hampshire Public Health Association was pleased to announce new members to its Board of Trustees for 2018-2019.  Newly elected officers include:
  • Tyler Brandow, Performance Improvement Manager NH Division of Public Health Services
  • Shannon Bresaw, Vice President of Public Health for Granite United Way,
  • Alysia Kennett, student at Southern New Hampshire University,
  • Jonathan Stewart, Director of the Community Health Institute/JSI, and
  • Lisa Vasquez, Substance Misuse Prevention Coordinator of the City of Nashua Division of Public Health & Community Services. 
Rebecca Sky of the Foundation for Healthy Communities was announced as the new President of the Board; Marcella Bobinsky as the President-Elect; Terry Johnson also of the Foundation for Healthy Communities as the Vice President; and Tyler Brandow as the new Secretary.  Sophia Japhet of the Manchester Health Department will continue to serve in her role as the Treasurer of the organization.

Click here for a complete list of NHPHA Board of Directors and their contact information.
Are you a “governance geek”? I am. I really enjoy the mostly behind-the-scenes work of making decisions about policy, bylaws, organizational structure, and strategic planning. If you enjoy that, too, here is an opportunity for you!

As you may know, NHPHA is affiliated with the American Public Health Association (APHA). This has many benefits for NHPHA including a voice in the governance decisions of APHA. Every affiliate has an Affiliate Representative to the Governing Council (ARGC). I currently serve as the interim ARGC so we are looking for someone to take on a 2-year term as our ARGC. Here is what the commitment involves:
  1. Participate in a call every other month with ARGCs from the other New England states. 
  2. Participate in a 2-hour call of the Governing Council in June.
  3. Attend Governing Council sessions during APHA Annual Meeting which take up part of the time, leaving you time to attend scientific sessions as well.
  4. Keep APHA informed of changes and activities of NHPHA; keep NHPHA informed about national work.
If I have piqued your curiosity, I will be happy to provide more detail. In addition, I will be available to give guidance and support to whomever takes on this role for NHPHA. jeanienhpha@gmail.com
Save the ChildrenTwo Colby-Sawyer College sophomore public health students, Lila Bradley & Molly Pfenning, recently had the opportunity to attend the annual Save the Children Advocacy Network summit in Washington, D.C. during their spring break.  

I spoke to Lila about her experience recently, and how it has impacted her future in the public health field.  She informed me that Save the Children is an international organization with a mission of increasing childhood education domestically as well as ending preventable disease and increasing child and maternal health internationally.  

After hearing about the summit from her advisor, Shari Goldberg, Professor, School of Nursing and Health Professions, Lila completed the application in early December and soon learned that she received a scholarship to attend the summit in D.C. 

There, she spent three days attending conferences on early childhood education, child and maternal health, and how to initiate change in her own community. 

Specifically, Lila told me that the conferences emphasized the need to support local organizations such as HeadStart early development programs in schools; these essential programs are often underfunded and suffer from a lack of basic supplies. 

The trip culminated in an exciting opportunity to go to Capitol Hill to meet and speak with US Senator Maggie Hassan on issues they are particularly concerned about in New Hampshire. Some of the issues that they discussed included the need for increased government funding for early childhood development programs as well as the policies Senator Hassan is considering initiating in NH to improve early childhood education.  

Upon returning to school, the two students have started a Save the Children club on campus, hoping to raise awareness of the organization and their mission; and perform such activities as book drives for local preschools and Head Start programs, among other projects.  Lila told me she found the trip, “Exhausting but empowering. And it definitely validated my reason for being in public health.”  We can’t wait to see what these students do with their newly gained knowledge from this wonderful opportunity. You can learn more about this worthy organization and all the work they do at https://www.savethechildren.org/.
Registration is now open for the New Hampshire Antimicrobial Stewardship Symposium which is taking place at Eventthe Grappone Conference Center in Concord, NH on May 23rd, 2018!  Registration is now open for the New Hampshire Antimicrobial Stewardship Symposium which is taking place at the Grappone Conference Center in Concord, NH on May 23rd, 2018!
The New Hampshire Division of Public Health Services, in co-sponsorship with the Foundation for Healthy Communities and the New England Quality Improvement Network, is thrilled to be hosting the first annual New Hampshire Antimicrobial Stewardship Symposium. Planners look forward to bringing together a large multidisciplinary group from across the state to address issues of antimicrobial stewardship in New Hampshire.
To save your spot on May 23rd for this exciting event, please REGISTER HERE

The day’s keynote speaker will be Dr. Arjun Srinivasan of the CDC Division of Healthcare Quality Promotion presenting on “Setting the Stage of National Efforts of Antimicrobial Resistance.” 
For more information about the day, see the event website page here or contact Hannah Leeman at hannah.leeman@dhhs.nh.gov or (603)271-1058Registration is now open for the New Hampshire Antimicrobial Stewardship Symposium which is taking place at the Grappone Conference Center in Concord, NH on May 23rd, 2018!
Post written by Joan Ascheim, NHPHA Interim Executive Director

Joan Ascheim webBODI always find our annual meeting to be celebratory, motivating, inspiring and a validation of the tremendous work we do collectively as public health professionals.  This year’s 2018 NHPHA Annual Meeting hit the mark on all counts!  There were 135 of us in attendance with 30 of those being students from various academic institutions.  Students had the opportunity to attend the pre-session presented by our Rising Stars Program and led by Cait Glennen entitled: Demystifying the Interview and Salary Negotiation Process.  The program was highly rated and noted to provide practical skills students could put to use as they search for their perfect public health jobs. 

The student poster session followed with 21 scholarly and diverse poster presentations spanning topics such as: structural racism in healthcare, increasing hand hygiene, suicide ideation among high school students, community health assessments and home visiting (see article below to learn about poster winners).  The poster sessions are a tremendous opportunity for students to share their work with public health professionals and provides a networking experience between the two groups.

Perhaps one of my favorite parts of the night is noshing on the delectable appetizers and connecting with my public health friends and colleagues.  New Hampshire, being such a small state, affords us the chance to develop long-lasting and meaningful relationships with our colleagues. I do believe these relationships are key to satisfying careers and strong partnerships that enhance our collaborations to improve the public’s health. 

For those who were unable to attend, I kicked off the meeting noting that National Public Health Week this year coincided with the 50th anniversary of the assassination of the Reverend Martin Luther King Jr.  It was striking to me when I reviewed the six focal areas of his civil rights platform which included: poverty, better jobs/higher wages, quality education, decent housing, justice and peace.  Clearly the social determinants of health that are so much a part of our daily public health lexicon are inextricably linked with basic civil rights.  

Bobbie Bagley shared activities of the Public Health Nursing Section and Jeanie Holt apprised us of our connected work with the American Public Health Association. Rachel Maxwell updated the group on the advocacy and policy work of the Public Policy Committee.  

The Roger Fossum Award was bestowed upon Linda Saunders-Paquette, probably best known to most for her tireless work leading New Futures to make significant impact on alcohol and drug policy in the state.  What people probably don’t know about Linda is that she started her career at St. Agatha Home for Children in Nanuet, NY.  Caring for these children, who were homeless and came from extreme poverty, transformed her thinking and set her on the path in pursuit of justice and equity.  Linda spoke of the need to interweave passion, skills and knowledge and to work relentlessly to make necessary policy changes to positively impact society.  Linda’s distinguished career is illustrative of this recipe for success.
The Friend of Public Health Award was presented to Senator Dan Feltes and Tom Irwin of the Conservation Law Foundation for their steadfast work leading to the passage of the lead poisoning prevention bill into law – legislation essential to the public’s health.
The New Hampshire Community Health Service Award was given to WMUR-TV for its contribution to improving the health of New Hampshire residents through excellent coverage of the opioid crisis.  WMUR’s special coverage brought attention to this public health epidemic and the devastation it has wrought on individuals, families and communities; addressed the stigma of this disease; and prompted political action to address the issue at the state and national levels.
Other award winners include Marie Mulroy, who received the President’s Award for her exceptional service to the Association, and Sara Rainer, an employee of the Institute on Disability at UNH and a UNH Master of Public Health student who received the Rising Star Award. 
Thank you for all who attended and contributed to another successful NHPHA annual meeting!
Zachary Ahmad-Kahloon and Ashley Hall were the winners of the student poster session awards at the annual meeting in April. The judges of the 14 poster presentations used criteria including relevance of subject; rigor of project methodology; voice projection and audience engagement; and use of graphs and images. The outstanding presentations showcased Hall’s and Ahmad-Kahloon’s passion for community health and social justice.
Zachary Ahmad-Kahloon is a prevention specialist in the Sexual Harassment and Rape Prevention Program (SHARPP), a crisis center at the University of New Hampshire. He began volunteering as an advocate in 2010, and joined the SHARPP staff four years ago. While working at the center, Zak has pursued graduate studies in the university’s MPH program, from which he graduates in May. He also is active in campus activities related to his interest in the intersection of sexual violence prevention and social justice. He chairs the UNH President’s Commission on the Status of LGBTQ+ People and serves on the advisory boards of the Association of Title IX Coordinators (ATIXA) and the Leadership Council of the Campus Advocacy and Prevention Professionals Association (CAPPA).

Zak’s poster project, done in conjunction with the New Hampshire Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence, examines the disconnect between the high rates of sexual and domestic violence experienced by LGBTQ+ People and the lower than expected rates of service utilization. Through interviews and data analysis, he identified a need for funding, reconsidered shelter models, and relationship building cross-agency. He hopes that the results of his project will serve as a foundation for future work with other underserved populations in New Hampshire.

Ashley Hall graduates in May with a Bachelor of Science degree in public health from Rivier University. As a student, she held several part-time jobs and was active in student affairs and student government, including serving as president of the Student Public Health Association, a peer mentor, a student ambassador, and a Student Government Association senator. She also volunteers every year at the Special Olympics in Boston. She plans to pursue graduate studies in public health and eventually hold a position as an infection preventionist in a hospital. 

Ashley’s poster project, co-authored with Ashley Conley, developed from an internship at Catholic Medical Center (CMC), where she was mentored by Conley, the hospital’s director of infection prevention. Her project focused on evaluating current hand hygiene compliance at CMC, which is critical to ensuring a healthy work environment and safe care for all patients. The aim of the project was to increase hand hygiene compliance to more than 90%. The project included a quiz, hand hygiene observations, completing the World Health Organization Hand Hygiene Self-Assessment Framework, and leading educational programs. The information gathered was used to develop a hand hygiene program utilizing the Influencer Behavior Change Model by appointing hand hygiene champions to monitor compliance and address missed hand hygiene opportunities among co-workers.

Rebecca Two
Because it’s here! April 2-8.  The theme this year is Changing our Futures Together.  Consider starting conversations with others in your community about the role each of us can play to create healthier people, families, and communities.  Public health work is partnership work achieved when people work together to create strong, vital communities in which all can live and contribute to our full potential.Because it’s here! April 2-8.  The theme this year is Changing our Futures Together.  Consider starting conversations with others in your community about the role each of us can play to create healthier people, families, and communities.  Public health work is partnership work achieved when people work together to create strong, vital communities in which all can live and contribute to our full potential.

During National Public Health Week, each day has a different focus.  Monday’s is behavioral health: how can we advocate for and promote behavioral well-being?   About one in every five U.S. adults experience mental illness in a given year.  At the forefront of this in New Hampshire is the opioid addiction epidemic.  This crisis is touching individuals and families in our state at an unbelievable rate. Projections estimate 485 deaths in 2017, which equates to a per capita rate that is 3rd highest in the country.  This disease is impacting families and children, employers and really, all of us. 

I feel fortunate to be able to make an impact working with many partners to increase access to treatment for people with opioid use disorders.  While building new services is critical, what I find so very important is addressing the stigma experienced by individuals and families struggling with this chronic remitting and relapsing disease of the brain.  The expression of the disease in undesirable behaviors turns many to believe the disease is a choice when it isn’t.  Self-judgement prevents people from seeking help.  Advocate Bernadette Gleeson has a different choice for us. “For us to give people who have addiction their best opportunity to be alive in recovery, “the public” must show up in ways that will change this game forever and end the “public health crisis of addiction.” Every single one of us can harness the power and agency in order to Be An Opportunity for people who have drug or alcohol addiction and people in recovery. No matter where that person is in their recovery, we have the power to be the light instead of pushing people further into darkness – which is where addiction breeds.” Sharing this message is my goal for public health week – what’s yours? #BeAnOpportunity 

One final note, I look forward to seeing each of you at our upcoming Annual Meeting on April 11th at the McAuliffe-Shepard Discovery Center in Concord, 4 to 7 PM.  Register now!  See article below for more details.

Rebecca Sky
NHPHA President

Michael Reaves2Michael Reaves has a seat at the table. The 27-year-old Southern New Hampshire University graduate student is attending monthly meetings of the NHPHA Board of Directors, as part of his experience as an Equity Leadership Fellow. He sits as a non-voting member, with Marcella Bobinsky acting as his board champion.   Michael Reaves has a seat at the table. The 27-year-old Southern New Hampshire University graduate student is attending monthly meetings of the NHPHA Board of Directors, as part of his experience as an Equity Leadership Fellow. He sits as a non-voting member, with Marcella Bobinsky acting as his board champion. 
The Health and Equity Partnership created the fellowship (ELF), now in its fourth year, to support the development of experienced leaders of color. Reaves, while earning a degree in higher education administration, has served for two years as assistant director of diversity at SNHU. 

“New Hampshire is becoming more diverse in terms of race, and is learning how to define equity,” Reaves says. “People are making decisions about groups that are not sitting at the table. We need more people who represent communities that are marginalized to have a voice in creating and designing programs that meet their needs.”

In addition to shadowing the NHPHA Board, he attends learning sessions to develop concrete leadership skills and deepen his understanding of an equity framework. He is paired with a mentor, Manuel Irvin, who offers experience and guidance. 

Reaves is passionate about youth outreach, at both the college and high school level. One of his goals as he continues his career is helping to address the opioid crisis. 
Reaves has not served on a board, and sees this as an excellent opportunity to learn about board structure and how to get involved.

NHPHA Annual Meeting 2018 002Join us on Tuesday, April 9, 2019!

Join your public health colleagues and friends for the New Hampshire Public Health Association’s annual meeting at the McAuliffe-Shepard Discovery Center. Before the meeting, at 2 p.m., public health students are invited to attend a Rising Stars workshop highlighting public health career paths in New Hampshire (see below for more details). The annual meeting is a time to recharge through networking, viewing student posters, and recognizing your outstanding peers during the annual awards ceremony. Also, the NHPHA is hosting its first ever annual silent auction!

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To register for the meeting and for more information, click here.

NHPHA’s Annual Meeting and Silent Auction event will begin with a networking social from 4 to 5:30 p.m. During this time, light refreshments will be served. Attendees will have the opportunity to walk through the student poster gallery where more than 20 students are presenting interesting findings from their research projects or practicums. Exhibits at the Discovery Center will also be open.

audreyknightThe main structure of our meeting will be from 5:30 to 7 p.m., when NHPHA will conduct annual business, present awards, and announce the election of new officers and Board of Directors. This year, NHPHA is pleased to honor Audrey Knight, RN, MSN, as the 2019 Roger Fossum Lifetime Achievement Awardee. Audrey served in the role of Child Health Program Manager at the New Hampshire Division of Public Health Services for many years and made significant contributions to improving the health of children and families in New Hampshire. 

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Rising Stars: Pre-Session and Student Poster Session

NHPHA is committed to growing its Rising Stars Initiative. To that end, the Rising Stars Pre-Session will be held on before the Annual Meeting at 2 p.m. We will hold a career panel to educate and excite students about public health career paths in New Hampshire. More details to follow! For students interested in submitting poster applications for the Annual Meeting, please fill out an abstract application for our Student Poster Session. It’s important to note:

  • All abstracts are accepted.
  • Students will be judged separately, by undergraduate and graduate level.
  • Prizes and awards are typically awarded during the Annual Meeting itself.
  • Students will receive the rubrics ahead of time.
  • Students must register for the Annual Meeting separately as part of the general registration.

There is no additional fee for students to attend this session.

NHPHA Annual Meeting Silent AuctionSilent Auction: NHPHA Needs Donations

How can you help?

This year the NHPHA is hosting its first ever Annual Silent Auction. This auction will be conducted online leading up to the event, and then the culmination of the auction will be at the annual meeting, finishing as a live silent auction.

We are looking for item donations for this event. The auction will benefit NHPHA and subsequently the greater NH public health community. We attract members from all over the state, and your business name and item will be prominently displayed electronically and at the event. The item can be an experience, a basket, goods, services, etc.


We will be advertising the event and silent auction items leading up to the meeting on Facebook and through the online platform, which is great exposure! The live event will mean further exposure, especially given the range of location of our members. This auction will benefit not only NHPHA, but also the greater public health community, and will serve as a great marketing opportunity for each business that donates.

For more information or to donate to the silent auction, please contact: Emily Goulet, NHPHA, 4 Park Street, Concord, NH 03301; egoulet@nhpha.org.

Register Here

Each year in New Hampshire, several hundred new cases of Granite State children living or receiving childcare in housing built before 1978 were getting poisoned with lead. For several years, Center for Disease Control (CDC) has recommended that all children have their blood tested for toxic levels of lead at ages one and two.  Up until the recent passage of SB 247, a bill which addresses childhood lead poisoning in paint and water, New Hampshire did not such a requirement for universal testing.  In fact, less than 20% of NH’s children in that age category have had this simple blood test. SB247 has now passed in the legislature and has been signed by the Governor into law.  This new law will require that:

  • Doctors and clinics test children at the one and two-year checkup, unless parents object.
  • Insurance must cover the cost of these tests.
  • Lowers the blood lead level that triggers DHHS investigations from the current “action level” of 10 micrograms per deciliter to 7.5 as of July 1,2019, and the CDC’s recommended level of 5 as of July 1,2021.
  • It enables earlier action to protect kids by providing important information to parents and landlords when a child is diagnosed with a blood lead level of 3 mcg/dl.
  • It limits DHHS to investigating only units that are occupied by a child under the age of seven or a pregnant woman in multi‐unit rental housing. A significant change from the current which requires all units in the building to be tested if a child’s blood lead levels exceeds the action level.                 
  • It establishes a loan guarantee program to help landlords and homeowners lower the overall cost of lead hazard remediation, with a total program cap of $6 million.
  • It addresses lead in drinking water by requiring DHHS to test drinking water in units where a child’s blood lead level meets or exceeds the “action level” and also requires day care centers and schools to test for lead in water every five years; and also requires filtration when lead levels exceed EPA standards.
  • It requires any newly created rental units and child care facilities building that was built before January 1, 1978 to be certified as lead safe effective July 1, 2024. This provision only applies to pre‐1978 buildings not currently being used as rental housing or for child care facilities that are converted to those uses after July 1, 2024.
  • This bill does not currently apply to privately owner-occupied housing, even if small children reside.
  • It updates the form sellers of real estate are already required to provide purchasers regarding lead, radon and arsenic with more complete and accurate information about lead.

For more information: http://www.leadfreekidsnh.org/index.php

Thank you all for inviting me to share my field study as I complete my Masters in Public Health with the University of New England. For my MPH field study I am working with Bi-State Primary Care Association. Bi-State supports Federally-Qualified and Community Health Centers in both Vermont and New Hampshire. Bi-State supports the health centers with workforce recruitment and retention, public policy advocacy, and other projects to support high quality, affordable primary and preventive health care for all, regardless of income or insurance coverage in rural and underserved communities. I am working with the Vermont office of Bi-State in Montpelier, VT.

The purpose of my project is to identify and produce a document for the best practices for Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs) in conducting a community health needs assessment. The regular completion of community health needs assessments are a requirement for health centers in order to receive federal funding. FQHCs complete community health needs assessments to demonstrate and document the needs of their target populations and to update their service areas, when appropriate. There is not currently a best practice guideline or template to assist the Vermont FQHCs in identifying and accessing the data to determine if their community’s’ needs are being met.  The purpose of this project is to identify and evaluate the current methods of conducting a community health needs assessment and the recommendations identified by previous HRSA site visits and to research and identify best practices for FQHCs in conducting a community future assessments. If this project is successful, I hope that whatever document I can create will also benefit our NH health centers.

While simultaneously working on this project with Bi-State, I am also engaged in writing a Capstone paper on improving access to primary care in rural communities. My research in this capstone paper is around initiatives in the state of New Hampshire that existing currently to improve rural primary care access, as well initiatives that are being suggested in the literature. By identifying the strengths and weaknesses of both New Hampshire’s current initiatives as well as initiatives being proposed in research, I hope to be able to synthesize and recommend suggestions for future New Hampshire initiatives to improve rural access to primary care.

This month, NHPHA hosted its first continuing education opportunity as part of our NH Public Health Training Center grant,  called, “Lobbying and Advocacy: A Primer for New Hampshire Non-Profit Advocates”.  Co-sponsored by the UNH Institute for Health Policy and Practice, the event was held at the UNH School of Law in Concord, with refreshments donated by The Works.  The training was well-attended by members, and other interested representatives from local and state government, non-profit organizations and advocacy organizations.  There was a wide range of experience and knowledge around lobbying and advocacy leading to a ripe conversation and many questions from the audience. 

The first speaker of the day, Kerri McGowan Lowery, JD, MPH provided a presentation, “How to Get Advocacy Done without Violating the Law!” Kerri’s presentation detailed federal lobbying laws and funding restrictions, as well as IRS lobbying rules. Kerri joined us from the University of Maryland, Carey School of Law where she is the Deputy Director,  and Director for Grants Research Network for Public Health Law Eastern Region.  Kerri’s talk concluded with an opportunity for attendees to exercise the key points through a series of case studies from which attendees could gain confidence advocating for the issues important to them.

Following Lowery was James Monahan, Vice President of The Dupont Group out of Concord, NH provided a New Hampshire specific presentation, “ Lobbying and Advocacy: A Primer for New Hampshire Non-Profit Advocates”.  His focused on the NH lobbying law.   Monahan closed his presentation by sharing some of his personal experiences and providing some key “Informal Rules of the Road”, including the importance of knowing the rules and procedures, of being honest, and of understanding the other side’s position. 

This training is the first part of a series in an effort to address workforce development in New Hampshire, a priority for the Association.  Stay tuned for upcoming workforce development opportunities.

Submitted by:

 Melissa Schoemmell, NHPHA BOD Member and Communications Committee Co-Chair.

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