SPH Competencies Health Policy and Management
• Identify the main components and issues of the organization, financing and delivery of health services and public health systems in the US.
• Describe the legal and ethical bases for public health and health services.
• Explain methods of ensuring community health safety and preparedness.
• Discuss the policy process for improving the health status of populations.
• Apply the principles of program planning, development, budgeting, management and evaluation in organizational and community initiatives.
• Apply principles of strategic planning and marketing to public health.
• Apply quality and performance improvement concepts to address organizational performance issues.
• Apply "systems thinking" for resolving organizational problems.
• Communicate health policy and management issues using appropriate channels and technologies.
• Demonstrate leadership skills for building partnerships.
• Define and discuss how rural status may impact cost, quality and access to healthcare
• Explain unique laws regulations and payment polities that may impact the delivery of healthcare in rural areas.
• Explain how public health service delivery in rural areas differs from that in urban and suburban areas.
• Apply theory and strategy-based communication principles across different settings and audiences.
SPH Cross-Cutting Competencies: Communication and Informatics
• Describe how societal, organizational, and individual factors influence and are influenced by public health communications.
• Discuss the influences of social, organizational and individual factors on the use of information technology by end users.
• Describe how the public health information infrastructure is used to collect, process, maintain, and disseminate data.
• Demonstrate effective written and oral skills for communicating with different audiences in the context of professional public health activities.
• Use informatics methods and resources as strategic tools to promote public health.
• Use information technology to access, evaluate, and interpret public health data.
• Use informatics and communication methods to advocate for community public health programs and policies.
• Collaborate with communication and informatics specialists in the process of design, implementation, and evaluation of public health programs.
• Apply legal and ethical principles to the use of information technology and resources in public health settings.
SPH Cross-Cutting Competencies: Diversity & Culture
• Describe the roles of, history, power, privilege and structural inequality in producing health disparities.
• Explain how professional ethics and practices relate to equity and accountability in diverse community settings.
• Explain why cultural competence alone cannot address health disparity.
• Discuss the importance and characteristics of a sustainable diverse public health workforce.
• Use the basic concepts and skills involved in culturally appropriate community engagement and empowerment with diverse communities.
• Apply the principles of community-based participatory research to improve health in diverse populations.
• Differentiate among availability, acceptability, and accessibility of health care across diverse populations.
• Differentiate between linguistic competence, cultural competency, and health literacy in public health practice.
• Cite examples of situations where consideration of culture-specific needs resulted in a more effective modification or adaptation of a health intervention.
• Develop public health programs and strategies responsive to the diverse cultural values and traditions of the communities being served.
SPH Cross-Cutting Competencies: Leadership
• Describe the attributes of leadership in public health.
• Describe alternative strategies for collaboration and partnership among organizations, focused on public health goals.
• Articulate an achievable mission, set of core values, and vision.
• Engage in dialogue and learning from others to advance public health
• Demonstrate team building, negotiation, and conflict management skills.
• Demonstrate transparency, integrity, and honesty in all actions.
• Use collaborative methods for achieving organizational and community health goals.
SPH Cross-Cutting Competencies: Public Health Biology
• Specify the role of the immune system in population health.
• Describe how behavior alters human biology.
• Identify the ethical, social and legal issues implied by public health biology.
• Explain the biological and molecular basis of public health.
• Explain the role of biology in the ecological model of population-based
• Explain how genetics and genomics affect disease processes and public health policy and practice.
• Articulate how biological, chemical and physical agents affect human
• Apply biological principles to development and implementation of disease prevention, control, or management programs.
• Apply evidence-based biological and molecular concepts to inform public health laws, policies, and regulations.
• Integrate general biological and molecular concepts into public health.
SPH Cross-Cutting Competencies: Professionalism
• Discuss sentinel events in the history and development of the public health profession and their relevance for practice in the field.
• Apply basic principles of ethical analysis (e.g. the Public Health Code of Ethics, human rights framework, other moral theories) to issues of public health practice and policy.
• Apply evidence-based principles and the scientific knowledge base to critical evaluation and decision-making in public health.
• Apply the core functions of assessment, policy development, and assurance in the analysis of public health problems and their solutions.
• Promote high standards of personal and organizational integrity, compassion, honesty and respect for all people.
• Analyze determinants of health and disease using an ecological framework.
• Analyze the potential impacts of legal and regulatory environments on the conduct of ethical public health research and practice.
• Distinguish between population and individual ethical considerations in relation to the benefits, costs, and burdens of public health programs.
• Embrace a definition of public health that captures the unique characteristics of the field (e.g., population-focused, community-oriented, prevention-motivated and rooted in social justice) and how these contribute to professional practice.
• Appreciate the importance of working collaboratively with diverse communities and constituencies (e.g. researchers, practitioners, agencies and organizations).
• Value commitment to lifelong learning and professional service including active participation in professional organizations.
SPH Cross-Cutting Competencies: Program Planning
• Describe how social, behavioral, environmental, and biological factors contribute to specific individual and community health outcomes.
• Describe the tasks necessary to assure that program implementation occurs as intended.
• Explain how the findings of a program evaluation can be used.
• Explain the contribution of logic models in program development, implementation, and evaluation.
• Differentiate among goals, measurable objectives, related activities, and expected outcomes for a public health program.
• Differentiate the purposes of formative, process, and outcome evaluation.
• Differentiate between qualitative and quantitative evaluation methods in relation to their strengths, limitations, and appropriate uses, and emphases on reliability and validity.
• Prepare a program budget with justification.
• In collaboration with others, prioritize individual, organizational, and community concerns and resources for public health programs.
• Assess evaluation reports in relation to their quality, utility, and impact on public health.
SPH Cross-Cutting Competencies: Systems Thinking
• Identify characteristics of a system.
• Identify unintended consequences produced by changes made to a public health system.
• Provide examples of feedback loops and “stocks and flows” within a public health system.
• Explain how systems (e.g. individuals, social networks, organizations, and communities) may be viewed as systems within systems in the analysis of public health problems.
• Explain how systems models can be tested and validated.
• Explain how the contexts of gender, race, poverty, history, migration, and culture are important in the design of interventions within public health systems.
• Illustrate how changes in public health systems (including input, processes, and output) can be measured.
• Analyze inter-relationships among systems that influence the quality of life of people in their communities.
• Analyze the effects of political, social and economic policies on public health systems at the local, state, national and international levels.
• Analyze the impact of global trends and interdependencies on public health related problems and systems.
• Assess strengths and weaknesses of applying the systems approach to public health problems.
• Apply social justice and human rights principles when addressing community needs.
• Develop strategies to motivate others for collaborative problem solving, decision-making, and evaluation.
• The School of Public Health has identified core master's in public health competencies for students upon graduation.
The National Center for Health care Leadership has developed competencies required for outstanding healthcare leadership for the future.
The NCHL Competency model, along with further information can be found here.