“One of the challenges is how do we harness all of that discussion in the mid-term elections about health care and the interest in health care and then move that into action. What does that really mean for individuals? How do we take advantage of that opportunity or challenge?”

That’s a quote from longtime APHA member Pamela Aaltonen, who sat down with APHA TV last November to talk about her goals as the Association’s new president.

In an interview on-site at the 2018 APHA Annual Meeting and Expo in San Diego, Aaltonen said she’s looking forward to meeting with public health practitioners across the country — many of who likely share her desire to build on growing support for protecting access to health care — to talk about promising ways to turn that interest into progress. She’s also excited to meet fellow APHA members and hear their ideas for creating an even stronger APHA.

“It’s kind of a two-way street when you’re president,” Aaltonen told APHA TV. “You want to carry forward the message of APHA, but also listen to what people are saying in terms of strengthening our Association.”

Aaltonen was one of a number of public health leaders and practitioners who sat down for exclusive, one-on-one interviews with APHA TV during November’s Annual Meeting, episodes from which are still up and available for view. Interviewees included labor leader and human rights activist Dolores Huerta; renowned health disparities researcher and Harvard professor David Williams; and john a. powell, director of the Haas Institute for a Fair and Inclusive Society. Many APHA TV interviews focused on ways to advance health equity, which was the theme of the San Diego meeting.

Aaltonen, one of just a handful of APHA presidents who hail from the nursing field, told APHA TV she’s excited to spend the year visiting with the Association’s many state and local Affiliates, sharing APHA resources and learning about local needs.

“Then there’s the whole issue of advocacy,” she noted. “APHA has a strong history in terms of advocating for public health.”

Visit APHA TV to watch Aaltonen’s full remarks as well as all the episodes from San Diego. APHA’s next big gathering happens on Feb. 6 in Washington, D.C., when policy and public health leaders will come together for “Public Health Under Siege: Improving Policy In Turbulent Times.” For information or to register for the one-day policy meeting, visit www.apha.org/events-and-meetings/apha-calendar/2019/apha-policy-action-institute.

For more video from the 2018 APHA Annual Meeting and Expo, register for APHA Live. APHA Live includes on-demand, online access to 14 of the top sessions from the APHA Annual Meeting and the opportunity to earn up to 19 free continuing education credits. For even more educational programming from APHA 2018, consider RAMP, which includes synced PowerPoint presentations and voice recording of scientific sessions from the San Diego meeting.