Looking Back and Ahead: CPHNO in Historical Perspective

Since the organization’s formation in 1991, the Council of Public Health Nursing Organizations (CPHNO) has focused on unifying and amplifying the authoritative voice of public health nurses (PHNs).  The organization was first known as the Quad Council of Public Health Nursing Organizations (QC).  According to Marcia Stanhope, Ph.D., RN, FAAN, CPHNO’s first Chair, the organization’s aim was “power in numbers, since each member organization was small and we wanted a voice nationally for public health nursing.”  

Under the leadership of Chair Cindy Stone, DrPH, MSN, RN,  the organization’s expansion resulted in a second name change, the Quad Council Coalition of Public Health Nursing Organizations, in 2015.  A new decade (2020) ushered in a strategic direction that welcomed a third name change for CPHNO.  This change aligned with more organizations joining the council, obtaining non-profit status, formalizing the organization’s first strategic plan, making  Public Health Nursing the organization’s official journal, and further strengthening the national voice of public health nurses.  

Chairperson Lisa Campbell, DNP, RN, PHNA-BC, FAAN, reports that CPHNO collectively represents approximately 190,000 nurses across the seven-member organizations: Alliance of Nurses for Healthy Environments, American Nurses Association, American Public Health Association – Public Health Nursing Section, Association of Community Health Nursing Educators, Association of Public Health Nurses, National Association of School Nurses, and the Rural Nurse Organization.  Three representatives from each member organization constitute the membership of CPHNO.  CPHNO also has a Liaison to the Council on Linkages (CoL) between Academia and Public Health Practice and a Liaison to the Community Preventive Services Taskforce.  

Recent notable achievements of CPHNO include providing instructive feedback to inform the FON2020-2030 Report.  We also advocated for health in all policies and made significant efforts to get nurses appointed to the Biden Transition Team COVID-19 Taskforce.   We recently commissioned a video – PHNs The First Line of Prevention: COVID-19 Edition.  Our organization’s website includes a range of resources, blogs, historical documents, and other relevant information.  CPHNO remains open to partnering with other groups and organizations that share our mission and vision.