APHA Executive Director Georges Benjamin, MD speaking at the Trust for America’s Health Event. Photo by Sabrina Halberg/APHA.

APHA Executive Director Georges Benjamin, MD speaking at the Trust for America’s Health Event. Photo by Sabrina Halberg/APHA.

The upcoming year will welcome a new president and a new Congress. APHA and national leaders gathered last week in Washington, D.C., to discuss ways public health can and should change, too.

APHA Executive Director Georges C. Benjamin, MD, joined an esteemed panel at a Trust for America’s Health event to discuss the direction of public health policy in the upcoming years and steps the White House and Congress can make with the inauguration of the next president. The panel included former Congresswoman Mary Bono, Interim President and CEO of Trust for America’s Health Richard Hamburg, Rails-to-Trails Senior Vice President Kevin Mills, APHA Environment Section Chair Megan Latshaw, pediatrician Lynda Young and Healthcare Ready Executive Director Emily Lord.

“It’s time for a sea change from our current sick care system to a true health system, where we focus on preventing disease and improving quality of life,” Hamburg said.

Hamburg outlined the key issues facing the nation’s health today and effective preventative measures that can be taken in response to shift the current paradigm. Seven major health issues were discussed in TFAH’s Blueprint for a Healthier America, including data showing that every $1 invested in school-based substance use intervention programs yields returns ranging from $3.80-$34.

View the TFAH report in full.