Public Health Interest Group (PHIG)

Public Health Interest Group (PHIG)

Mission Statement

Public health, in its simplest form, is concerned with the health of a population as a whole, as regulated and promoted by the state. The World Health Organization further defines public health practices as those whose “activities aim to provide conditions in which people can be healthy”, and subsequently, “focus[es] on entire populations, not on individual patients or diseases”. This interest group is aimed at providing students the opportunity to observe public health practices on not only the state and county levels but also nationally. The need for medical care and public health practices extend far beyond the needs of our immediate communities. Therefore, it is imperative that medical students and doctors in-training learn public health practices and see them put in action on a daily basis in order to better the human condition. This club is open to all UA COM-P students, staff, and faculty.

Public Health

Public health refers to all organized measures (whether public or private) to prevent disease, promote health, and prolong life among the population as a whole. Its activities aim to provide conditions in which people can be healthy and focus on entire populations, not on individual patients or diseases. Thus, public health is concerned with the total system and not only the eradication of a particular disease. The three main public health functions are:

    • The assessment and monitoring of the health of communities and populations at risk to identify health problems and priorities.

    • The formulation of public policies designed to solve identified local and national health problems and priorities.

    • To assure that all populations have access to appropriate and cost-effective care, including health promotion and disease prevention services.

Public health professionals monitor and diagnose the health concerns of entire communities and promote healthy practices and behaviors to ensure that populations stay healthy. One way to illustrate the breadth of public health is to look at some notable public health campaigns:

    • Vaccination and control of infectious diseases

    • Motor-vehicle safety

    • Safer workplaces

    • Safer and healthier foods

    • Safe drinking water

    • Healthier mothers and babies and access to family planning

    • Decline in deaths from coronary heart disease and stroke

    • Recognition of tobacco use as a health hazard

The term global public health recognizes that, as a result of globalization, forces that affect public health can and do come from outside state boundaries and that responding to public health issues now requires attention to cross-border health risks, including access to dangerous products and environmental change.

(Adapted from:

Past Events

  • Immigrant Health Issues seminar led by Esperanca

  • Opioid Health Crisis in Arizona seminar led by Dr. Lisa Villarroel from AZ Department of Health Services

Club Leadership

JoAnn Nam -

Maya Patel -

Faculty Advisor:

Dr. Moe Bell MD, MPH