The essential features of the work of specialists in public health. The 1988 Report of the US Institute of Medicine on the Future of Public Health categorized core functions under three headings: Assessment, Policy Development, and Assurance. Assessment is the obligation to monitor health status and community needs routinely, regularly, and systematically. Policy development requires comprehensive plans, strategies, and tactics based on available knowledge and responsive to community needs. Assurance is a guarantee that high-priority personal and community health services will be provided for all by qualified organizations and staff under public, private, or mixed public/private auspices. For details and discussion, see http://www.health.gov/phfunctions/activiti.htm.
Subjects: Public Health and Epidemiology.