Whitney Hale


College: Public Health

Book, Seminar Explore the State of Public Health in America

Published: Dec 5, 2012



LEXINGTON, Ky. (Dec. 5, 2012) – On June 28, 2012, the United States Supreme Court upheld President Barack Obama’s Affordable Care Act by a vote of five to four.


Resulting in national news blunders and mixed reactions from the world of social media, the “Obamacare” vote was a landmark decision on the future of health care in America. The Supreme Court ruling energized an ongoing conversation about healthcare reform and what changes Americans can expect to see in the coming decade.


Editor Dr. James W. Holsinger Jr., the Charles T. Wethington Jr. Chair in the Health Sciences at the University of Kentucky, and an esteemed group of scholars and practitioners offer a concise overview of the burgeoning field of public health in "Contemporary Public Health: Principles, Practice, and Policy." The book provides historical background that contextualizes the current state of the field and explores major issues facing practitioners today, emphasizing that the need for effective services has never been greater.


Designed as a supplemental text for introductory courses in public health and as an essential reference for policymakers, administrators and practitioners, "Contemporary Public Health" addresses topics such as the social and ecological determinants of health, marginalized populations, community-oriented primary care, accreditation, and the organizational landscape of the American public health system.


While debates over healthcare reform continue, no one disputes the essential role of public health in the United States. As costs rise, new approaches in public health research and practice take on added importance.


With fresh historical and methodological analyses conducted by a group of distinguished authors, "Contemporary Public Health" provides practitioners, health advocates, and students with a guide to help them understand the complex and changing landscape of the field. 


Prior to his return to UK, Holsinger served as secretary of the Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services from 2003 to 2005, and as chancellor of the UK Chandler Medical Center from 1994–2003. He served for 26 years in the Department of Veterans Affairs and was appointed by President George H. W. Bush as the Under Secretary for Health from 1990–1993.


To celebrate the release of "Contemporary Public Health," the UK College of Public Health has organized a seminar that will bring experts featured in the book to Lexington to discuss the current state of the field. "Contemporary Issues in Health and Healthcare Seminar," which is free and open to the public, will run from 9 to 11 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 8, at the gallery at UK's William T. Young Library.


To kick off Saturday's seminar, Dr. Stephen C. Schoenbaum, will present, “Can the U.S. Do Better on Mortality Amenable to Healthcare?” Schoenbaum is special adviser to the president of the Josiah Macy Jr. Foundation and was executive vice president for programs at the Commonwealth Fund and executive director of its Commission on a High Performance Health System. He is also a lecturer in the Department of Population Medicine at Harvard Medical School.


Dr. Steven H. Woolf will present, “The U.S. Health Disadvantage Relative to Other High Income Countries: What’s Ailing America?” Woolf is director of the Center on Human Needs at Virginia Commonwealth University and professor in the Department of Family Medicine. He has also served as senior adviser to the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force.


Following Woolf, Richard Ingram will present, “Moving the Needle? The Health Status of Marginalized Populations.” Ingram is a research assistant professor at the UK College of Public Health.


Closing out the seminar will be Dr. C. William Keck presenting “Melding Medicine and Public Health.” Keck is professor emeritus and past chair of the Department of Family and Community Medicine at the Northeastern Ohio Medical University and former director of health for the city of Akron. He is past president of the American Public Health Association and the Council on Education for Public Health; he currently chairs the Council on Linkages between Academia and Public Health Practice.


The University Press of Kentucky is the scholarly publisher for the Commonwealth of Kentucky, representing a consortium that now includes all of the state universities, five private colleges, and two historical societies. Led by Director Stephen Wrinn, its editorial program focuses on the humanities and the social sciences. Offices for the administrative, editorial, production and marketing departments of the press are found at UK, which provides financial support toward the operating expenses of the publishing operation.   



MEDIA CONTACT: Whitney Hale, (859) 257-8716 or whitney.hale@uky.edu

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