The Public Health PBRN Program supports 12 research networks comprised of local and state governmental public health agencies, community partners, and collaborating academic research institutions. These networks are located in Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Nebraska, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Washington, and Wisconsin. In addition to the 12 supported research networks, 12 other PBRNs participate in the program as affiliate members. They are located in California, Georgia, Iowa, Kansas, Maryland, Missouri, New Hampshire, New Jersey, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas and Vermont.
The Colorado Public Health PBRN will foster research on public health organization, decision-making and practice within the diverse rural and urban settings of Colorado. The network will be organized by the Colorado Association of Local Public Health Officials and housed with the Public Health Alliance of Colorado, a collaborative of ten public health professional associations within the state. Participating practice agencies will include local health departments represented by the Colorado Association of Local Public Health Officials, along with the state health agency. Research partners will include faculty from the Colorado School of Public Health, the Rocky Mountain Prevention Research Center, the University of Colorado School of Medicine, and the University of Colorado School of Public Affairs. The network will focus initially on studying the implementation and impact of a natural experiment involving recently passed state legislation that modernizes state public health laws and redistributes local public health agency responsibilities and powers. Other research interests involve the use of local health and environmental data for public health planning and decision-making, cross-jurisdictional shared services, public health infrastructure law and public health agency organization and governance.
Co-director CO PBRN:
Lisa VanRaemdonck, M.P.H., M.S.W.
Executive Director Colorado Assn. of Local Public Health Officers (CALPHO)
Julie Marshall, Ph.D.
Director, Rocky Mountain Prevention Research Center
Colorado School of Public Health
The Connecticut Practice Based Research Network (PBRN), led by the Connecticut Association of Directors of Health, includes the Connecticut Department of Health, local health departments across the state, the Hispanic Health Council, and the academic public health programs of the University of Connecticut, Southern Connecticut State University, and Yale University. Initial research projects will focus on organizational and governance issues within local public health systems and their effects on the scope and cost of state-mandated public health services.
Jennifer Kertanis, M.P.H.
Connecticut Association of Directors of Health
Elaine O’Keefe, M.S.P.H.
The Florida Public Health Practice-Based Research Network (PBRN), led by the Duval County Health Department, includes participation by all 67 county health departments through the Florida Association of County Health Officers, the Florida Department of Health, the Florida Public Health Institute, and a consortium of university partners representing the major public health colleges throughout the state. The network’s initial research project is examining the effects of public health funding streams within the state on local health department capacities to do essential services. This project resulted in numerous presentations at national public health and health research conferences in 2011 and manuscript accepted for publication in the Journal of Public Health Management and Practice (in press).
The FL PH PBRN also received two Quick Strike grants examining regional variation in local public health department’s response in the H1N1 campaign and another assessing the impact of the County Health Rankings on public health systems and services. The H1N1 study results were published in Northeast Florida Medicine Journal and final analyses are being conducted on the County Health Rankings study.
Chair FL PHPBRN:
Director Duval County Health Department
Project Manager FL PHPBRN:
Administrator Institute for Health, Policy & Evaluation Res
The purpose of the Georgia Public Health Practice-Based Research Network (GA PH PBRN) is to improve the health of Georgia residents through a robust, collaborative, statewide practice-based public health research network. Public health systems are being challenged to meet emerging health crises with greater effectiveness and efficiency while resources continue to dwindle. The GA PH PBRN is a response to this challenge as part of a larger Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) supported initiative to develop research networks for studying the “reach, effectiveness, efficiency and equity of public health practice.” The GA PH PBRN is registered with the RWJF National Coordinating Center for PH PBRNs. The growing system of Public Health PBRNs is intended to overcome the frequently cited gap in research that informs public health practice.
The GA PH PBRN creates a network infrastructure and practice-based coordinating center to bring Georgia’s academic public health practice research assets and Georgia’s public health practice community together to create a larger and stronger base of research evidence to address major public health issues facing our public health systems. The GA PH PBRN was initially composed of Health Districts and their respective county health departments in the southern half of the state and Georgia Southern University’s Jiann Ping Hsu College of Public Health including the Center for Rural Health and the Office of Public Health Practice. The network also includes the Georgia Department of Public Health and the Georgia State Office of Rural Health in addition to non government organizations with major public health practice missions, including the Georgia Public Health Association.
Although the GA PH PBRN is a more regional network anchored by Health Districts in the Southern half of the state, it was envisioned as a statewide network, adding other parts of the state to the network as the PBRN demonstrates its utility to the public health practice community. This statewide network is supported by the State Coordinating Center for the GA PH PBRN, which is located in the Jiann Ping Hsu College of Public Health, a fully accredited College of Public Health by the Council of Education for Public Health and member of the Association of Schools of Public Health.
GAPHPBRN will encourage and support public health practitioners at district and local levels throughout Georgia to collaborate with researchers in designing, implementing, evaluating, and disseminating practical solutions to public health systems and practice problems.
GAPHPBRN is an organized group of public health practitioners and academic partners that collaborates to identify relevant public health issues, conduct applied research studies, and disseminate findings in active practice settings.
The Goals of GAPHPBRN are to:
- Identify practice questions of interest to GA health districts and academic partners.
- Identify and seek funds to answer practice questions.
- Translate research into practice (through active dissemination of research findings).
- Adopt effective evidence-based practices.
- Link with other accountability and quality improvement activities.
Network Academic Chair GA PH PBRN
William Livingood, PhD
Jiann-Ping Hsu College of Public Health, Georgia Southern University
University of Florida College of Medicine
State Coordinating Center Manager GA PH PBRN
Angie Peden, M.P.H.
Jiann-Ping Hsu College of Public Health, Georgia Southern University
The Kentucky Public Health Research Network (K-PHReN) is interested in research focusing on public health partnerships, strategies to reduce health disparities, and the roles of leadership in public health practice improvement. Administered by the Kentucky Public Health Association, the network includes the Kentucky Department of Health, 17 local public health jurisdictions and their community partners, a state primary care research network, the Kentucky Health Department Association, and research partners at the University of Kentucky College of Public Health. KPHReN has been active in research in the areas of emergency preparedness, evidence-based public health practices, quality improvement, and health disparities. KPHReN has active partnerships with other PBRNs including primary care, physical rehabilitation, and oral health networks. Other interests of KPHReN include evaluating the impact of partnerships between public health and primary care providers in Kentucky, collaborative practices to reduce health disparities, and the impact of leadership development initiatives on public health practice.
Angela Dearinger, M.D., M.P.H.
University of Kentucky College of Public Health and College of Medicine
Sarah T. Wilding, RN, M.P.A.
Kentucky Department of Public Health
The Massachusetts Public Health Practice-based Research Network (PBRN) will develop initial research capacity for studying the effects of regionalization on public health service delivery and outcomes. This network will be organized by the practice arm of the Boston University School of Public Health and will take advantage of a natural experiment created by the state’s effort to develop a regionalized organizational structure from its current 351 separate public health jurisdictions. Network participants will include the state Department of Public Health, eight local health departments (LHDs) participating in a state regionalization work group, and representatives from key public health associations within the state. Research partners will include faculty at the Boston University School of Public Health and the nonprofit Institute for Community Health. Initial research projects will elucidate key factors that influence the implementation and impact of regionalized public health delivery models, and will compare the costs and consequences alternative approaches to regionalization.
Harold Cox, M.S.S.W.
Justeen Hyde, Ph.D.
Institute for Community Health
The Minnesota Practice Based Research Network (PBRN), organized by the Minnesota Department of Health, includes partners at the Local Public Health Association of Minnesota, the State Community Health Services Advisory Committee, the University of Minnesota School of Public Health, and local health departments across the state. An initial research project will examine variation in the organizational structures and operational environments of local public health agencies, and the effects of this variation on the quality of public health services.
Debra Burns, M.A.
Kimberly Gearin, Ph.D.
Minnesota Department of Health
The Nebraska Practice Based Research Network (PBRN) led by the Nebraska Division of Public Health will organize a research network that encompasses Nebraska’s recently-regionalized public health agencies along with four urban and rural single-county health departments, the University of Nebraska, Creighton University, and several other public health organizations. The network’s initial studies will examine the implementation and impact of Nebraska’s newly established regional public health service model, with an early focus on organizational design and workforce issues.
David Palm, Ph.D.
Nebraska Division of Public Health
Li Wu Chen, Ph.D.
University of Nebraska Medical Center
The New York Public Health Practice Based Research Network (NY PHPBRN) is led by the Office of Public Health Practice in the New York State Department of Health. It includes practice partners from local health departments and the New York State Association of County Health Officials. Researchers and other public health organization network members include the University at Albany School of Public Health, the New York Academy of Medicine, Empire State and New York City-Long Island- Lower Tri-County Public Health Training Centers, Public Health Solutions and Columbia University. The network's initial research project is utilizing both qualitative and quantitative approaches to characterize the use of evidence-based decision making in local health departments and identify facilitators and barriers to its use. A second research study is evaluating the implementation and impact of an initiative by the state health department to integrate the delivery of HIV and STD prevention and control services provided through its regional offices.
Sylvia Pirani, M.P.H., M.S.
New York Department of Health
Sandra McGinnis, Ph.D.
University of Albany
The North Carolina Public Health Practice-Based Research Network (NC PH PBRN) is designed to stimulate and support new research based on questions relevant to local health departments in North Carolina. The network provides a mechanism through which local health departments and academicians can partner to study practically meaningful questions.
The network is housed at, and administered by,the Academic Practice-Based Research section of the NC Public Health Association. The NC PH PBRN includes collaborations with the NC Division of Public Health, local health departments and research partners at colleges and universities throughout the state.
Rosemary Summers, Dr.P.H., M.P.H.
Orange County Health Department (ret)
Nancy Winterbauer, PhD, MS
East Carolina University
The Ohio Practice Based Research Network (PBRN) includes a diverse group of local health departments in nine counties that are affiliated with the state’s academic public health programs, along with the Ohio Department of Health and Case Western Reserve University’s public health program and Prevention Research Center. The network’s initial research will evaluate the use of public health informatics methodologies within local health departments and evaluate the effects of these methodologies on community health assessment, surveillance, and service delivery activities conducted by local health departments. Click here to visit their website.
Matthew Stefanak, M.P.H.
Mahoning County Department of Health
Scott Frank, M.D., M.S.
Case Western Reserve University
The Tennessee Public Health Practice-Based Research Network (TN-PBRN), is a collaborative project functioning under the umbrella of the East Tennessee Forum on Public Health and Preventive Medicine (hereafter, the Forum). The Forum was established in 1995 to facilitate closer working relationships between academia and public health and preventive medicine practitioners, bringing a local focus to public health issues of state and national concern. The Forum includes the leadership representing the Knox County Health Department; the East Tennessee Regional Health Office of the Tennessee Department of Health; the University of Tennessee (UT) MPH-associated faculty; the Department of Family Medicine, UT Medical Center; the UT College of Veterinary Medicine; and the UT College of Nursing. The Forum has met quarterly since 1995, providing networking opportunities to build collaborative relationships and to strengthen the connections between academia and practice. In 2002 the Forum was recognized with a second place award by the Council on Linkages Between Academia and Public Health Practice for its accomplishments in fostering academic-practice engagement.
The University of Tennessee, Center for Public Health (now merged into the Department of Public Health) was officially recognized as the lead agency in an Affiliate PBRN in November 2010, representing all of the Forum partners. In April 2012, three of the Forum partners – the UT Department of Public Health, the Knox County Health Department, and the East Tennessee Regional Health Office of the Tennessee Department of Health – became one of six PH-PBRNs which were awarded a grant through the National Coordinating Center’s Multi-Network Practice end Outcome Variation Examination Study (MPROVE).
The Washington Public Health Practice-Based Research Network (PBRN) is designed to support research that examines variations in public health practice across local areas and opportunities for practice improvement through studies of comparative effectiveness. Led by the Public Health-Seattle & King County local health department, the research network includes the local health departments serving the nine largest jurisdictions within the state, along with the Washington State Department of Health, the Washington State Association of Local Public Health Officials, and research partners at University of Washington School of Public Health and Community Medicine and School of Nursing. The network focuses on cross-jurisdictional public health practice issues relevant to front-line public health service delivery. To date, the WA PBRN has completed 4 studies, and is working on 3 additional projects. Current priorities include proactive dissemination of research results to public health practitioners, strengthening ties to conversations about changes to the public health system in Washington, and increasing revenue to the network for additional studies. Long-term research interests include projects that focus on public health financing, quality improvement processes, health disparities, workforce competency, and community health assessment.
David Fleming, M.D.
Public Health Seattle & King County
The Wisconsin Practice Based Research Network (PBRN), led by the Wisconsin Division of Public Health (WDPH), brings together the state’s independent public health institute, the Wisconsin Association of Local Health Departments and Boards, the Wisconsin Public Health Association, and an initial group of 12 local health departments that vary in size, service mix, and geographic location. Academic partners include the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Nursing and School of Medicine and Public Health. The network will focus initially on research examining how public health budgets and revenues have changed in response to the economic downturn, and the effects of these changes on service delivery.
Patricia Guhleman, M.S.
Wisconsin Department of Health
The New Jersey Affiliate Public Health PBRN, established in 2009, is led by the New Jersey Department of Health in partnership with the New Jersey Medical School (NJMS) and the School of Public Health (SPH) of the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey. The network team also includes the New Jersey Association of County and City Health Officials (NJACCHO); the Rutgers Office of Continuing Professional Education (OCPE), and SPH’s New Jersey Public Health Training Center (NJPHTC). Since its inception, this partnership has been working together on a variety of public health training and workforce development projects in New Jersey.
Currently, the NJ Affiliate PBRN is one of six Public Health PBRNs participating in the Multi-Network Practices and Outcomes Variation and Examination (MPROVE) Study. Launched in the spring of 2012, the study will quantify and characterize geographic variation of a set of “high value” local public health service delivery measures within and across networks.
The network welcomes the opportunity to participate in research examining the implementation, delivery, and impact of public health services and to work with partners in other states toward a national standard to measure and assess public health.
Christina Tan, MD, MPH
New Jersey Department of Health
Pauline Thomas, MD
New Jersey Medical School of the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey
The PHSSR Practice-Based Research Network for the State of CA is led by the Public Health Institute (PHI), Oakland, California. The CA PBRN is developing a research agenda that studies the “sweet spot” where synergistic health improvement activities within the clinical care system and government public health system overlap and have the greatest impact on total population health. Priority areas include health equity, public health data integration and meaningful use issues, testing and validating local health department assessment instruments, application of systems science methodologies for health policy planning, and strategies for achieving accreditation/quality improvement initiatives.
Director PHSSR/PBRN, PHI:
Dawn Jacobson, MD, MPH
Co-Director, PHSSR/PBRN, PHI:.
Marta Induni, PhD