Saint Joseph's University

HED 552 Epidemiology and Community Health

Perform a SWOT analysis on public health to develop a revolutionary program.

Format: Online
Duration: 8 weeks
Credits: 3 credits

As part of the General Track, Epidemiology and Community Health (HED 552) explores the basic concepts of epidemiology as a public health science, including rates and ratios, risk and association, causation and investigation of outbreak.

Epidemiology and Community Health Coursework

All HED 552 coursework explores the past, present, and future of public and community health — their strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats (SWOT). Through careful analysis of program competencies, potential challenges and proposed solutions, you will develop a public health intervention that is designed to alleviate a health challenge relevant to your local community. The course culminates with a presentation that outlines the scope, purpose and consequences of an evidenced-based public health program, complete with an introduction, description of program, and illustration of potential outcomes.

Up for Discussion

Learn from your instructor and peers via interactive discussion forums that can include a number of intriguing and current health topics like the example below.

How do various forms of law contribute to government's ability to influence health?

What You’ll Learn in Epidemiology and Community Health

As an introduction to public health as a science, Epidemiology and Community Health explores the historical and current role of public health. Class discussions will complement the explanation of core functions, essential services of the field and methods used to assess population health. As the course progresses, focus shifts to the function of public health within the country’s health system, along with how local, state, and federal government departments contribute to the delivery of care. The importance of the varying levels of prevention and health promotion programs are discussed in depth, along with the medium used to deliver the information.

Speaking of media, comprehensive coverage of recent, and seemingly frequent, disasters illustrates how emergency preparedness and response systems are of critical importance. You’ll explore the role of public health programs and professionals with regards to surveillance, investigation, and analysis of disease outbreaks and communicating risk to the public, as well as responsibility to respond. As a class, we’ll discuss how this diverse population of health care workers contributes to carrying out core functions and essential services of the public health system.

We will review the role of epidemiology as a public health science and explore the various tools used by epidemiologists to identify risk factors and methods of controlling disease. Through evaluation of the past, we can determine the future of public health and the health challenges that the global community will face in the upcoming decades.

As the coursework concludes, you’ll demonstrate your knowledge of public health principles by developing a public health program that you’ll present to the class. To ensure you fully exhibit what you’ve gleaned in class, your presentation should include identification of shareholders, program description and evaluation design, along with the supporting data collection and justification of conclusions for public health planning.

Course Topics

Over the eight-week duration of the course, you’ll be introduced to new topics and weekly themes. Sample weekly topics may include:

  • Measuring Population Health
  • Public Health in the Health System and the Government
  • Community Health and Emergency Response
  • Public Health Workforce and Administration
  • Environmental Health and Public Health Nursing
  • Epidemiology and Public Health Education
  • Public Health Professions and Future Challenges
  • Planning and Evaluation of Public Health Interventions

Course Learning Objectives

All Epidemiology and Community Health coursework introduces the public health science of epidemiology by using data to establish facts, and predict trends, needs, and challenges. Upon completion of the course, you will have a data-driven and dynamic ability to:

  • Define and discuss the goals of the various areas of public health including social and behavioral sciences, biostatistics, environmental health, health services management and policy, and epidemiology.
  • Identify contributing factors and solutions to complex public health issues.
  • Plan and evaluate public health interventions for efficacy and safety.
  • Demonstrate knowledge of the basic principles and methodologies used in epidemiology and how they are applied to the field of public health.
  • Describe the functions and purpose of managerial epidemiology in health care settings and government regulatory agencies.
  • Demonstrate knowledge of the purpose and uses of descriptive epidemiology including the methods of data collection and numerical expression of the distribution of health outcomes.
  • Describe the basic epidemiologic study designs including cohort, case-control, cross- sectional, clinical trial, and systematic review. Identify the strengths and limitations of each study design.

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To learn more about the online Master of Science in Health Administration curriculum from Saint Joseph’s University, call (866) 758-7670 to speak with a program manager or request more information below.

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