Health for the 21st Century Summit

More than 120 people attended the Health for the 21st Century Summit hosted at the University of Kansas on January 16, 2018.

Karen DeSalvo, M.D., M.P.H., and former Assistant Secretary for Health and national expert in Public Health 3.0, served as the Ralph I. Canuteson Memorial Lectureship keynote speaker.

This convening focused on collectively advancing the health of Kansans, and the evolution of public health to meet emerging demands. The summit was made possible by the University of Kansas Medical Center, the University of Kansas Center for Community Health and Development, the Lawrence-Douglas County Health Department, and the Kresge Foundation. “Attendees walked away with a deeper appreciation of the importance of public health and health care working together to address the root causes of health,” said Dan Partridge, Director of the Lawrence-Douglas County Health Department.

Breakout discussions explored expanding data sharing for effective population-level health improvement; the state of accreditation; and the role of multi-sector collaboration in Kansas.

“Thank you to the Lawrence Douglas County Health Department for demonstrating how local public health can function as the Chief Health Strategist. I left the Health for the 21st Century Summit ready to take action," said Sonja Armbruster, MA, Health Sciences Educator in the Department of Public Health Sciences at Wichita State University.

Coordinator of the event Dr. Vicki Collie-Akers expressed that the summit was an opportunity for local and statewide partners to explore how public health systems can evolve to more effectively promote population health. “As our communities and health needs change, the public health system needs the ability to detect issues as they emerge, and a workforce that has the skills to drive policy and environmental change. Our hope in hosting this summit for practitioners and researchers was that we would spark action for making progress on public health 3.0 in Kansas,” said Collie-Akers. ”We were honored to hear from Dr. Karen DeSalvo about how others are doing this, and to hear her call to action: keep our shared purpose of increasing the effectiveness of public health front and center when considering the tough decisions ahead of us.”