PHANYC is a meeting ground for public health professionals and students living and/or working in New York City. Employed by a variety of organizations – the government, hospitals, non-profits, NGOs, universities – and/or enrolled in one of several graduate programs in public health in the New York City area, they are united by their interest in promoting health and preventing illness.

We currently publish a newsletter on a quarterly basis.

NOTE: Photo Caption- Members of the Policy Committee. (Front row, left to right: Elaine Congress, Nina Rothschild, Kavitha Das. Back row, left to right: Shakiba Muhammadi, Sharon Mosley, Alison Braid, Lovelyne Julien, Colette Prophete, and Abby Ross.)


Welcome to the Public Health Association of New York City’s newsletter, Public Health Voices!  The Public Health Association of New York City (PHANYC) is delighted and proud to promote this new tool to disseminate information and to generate lively and informed discussion about hot topics among members of the public health community in New York City.  PHANYC is a meeting ground for public health professionals and students living and/or working in New York City.  Employed by a variety of organizations – the government, hospitals, non-profits, NGOs, universities – and/or enrolled in one of several graduate programs in public health in the New York City area, they are united by their interest in promoting health and preventing illness.

As readers who have participated in PHANYC activities over the years know, PHANYC has a rich history and continues to offer engaging and stimulating discussions in its monthly policy committee meetings and in its annual public health breakfast and all-members meeting/student symposium each Spring.  The public health breakfast in May 2016 featured speakers on diverse topics ranging from maternal and child health initiatives at the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (NYC DOHMH) to Zika to health care reform with a focus on the Affordable Care Act versus the New York Health Act to alcohol advertising on New York City public transit.  And the student presentations at the annual meeting in June on topics ranging from a stop smoking initiative using Twitter at a university in Turkey to increasing awareness of stroke risk in Ghana were terrific.

The lineup of engaging speakers and discussions about important topics continues in Fall/Winter 2016-2017.  Mark your calendars now for an exciting series of events: monthly policy committee meetings every first Tuesday of the month, which includes robust discussions following presentations, develops a formal policy agenda, and plans ahead for special events; an annual legislative breakfast; an annual meeting and a student symposium; and a student networking event this winter. Per view our members, we often share events at NYC universities such as the Aid in Dying forum sponsored by the New York Bar association this month, View the events calendar to learn more.

For 2016-2017, policy priorities for PHANYC include: reproductive, maternal, neonatal, child, and adolescent health; health promotion and disease prevention; and emergency preparedness.  Although these are our major areas of interest, we are not confined to them – and if you have a major public health issue to discuss or want to share suggestions about potential speakers, feel free to attend a meeting and raise the idea. See the PHANYC in Action section to learn more about the public health policies that policy advocates have recently presented to our committee.

The goal of this newsletter is to generate fresh ideas for and participation in PHANYC.  PHANYC wants to take full advantage of the incredibly talented pool of public health professionals in New York City and bring them together for a rich dialogue.  In this publication, students and professionals will find articles on topics as diverse as palliative care in dentistry to the lessons learned from the Affordable Care Act. Future issues will focus on an equally tantalizing array of issues including presentations at APHA by PHANYC members and interviews with current PHANYC members who are doing interesting work and are potentially willing to provide career advice and/or serve as mentors.  Our hope is that this new publication will broaden awareness of and participation in our organization’s activities so that we can solidify connections and establish new networks, encourage collaborations and dialogue, and build a richer and stronger organization.

A warm note of thanks, finally, to the three individuals who have been the driving force behind this newsletter – Moria Byrne-Zaaloff, a recent graduate of NYU’s College of Global Public Health, who has been ably assisted by Lovelyne Julien, who just graduated from the same program and by Alison Braid, who is currently earning her MPH degree at the University of New England.  Congratulations on a job well done!

Happy Holidays from all of us at PHANYC,

Nina Rothschild, DrPH, MPH
President of the Public Health Association of NYC



Welcome to the second issue of Public Health Voices! As the President of the Public Health Association of New York City (PHANYC), I want to provide a snapshot of the articles in this issue of our signature publication. Featured is a sneak peek into what to expect at our upcomingLegislative Breakfast in early April at the LGBT Center at 208 West 13th Street, an event featuring invited guest, NYC Health Commissioner Mary Bassett and confirmed speaker, NY Assembly member and Ranking Chair, Richard Gottfried. View the PHANYC In Action section to learn more.

As an organization with a strong policy arm, we couldn’t start this issue without mentioning the report released by Congressional Budget Office (CBO) last week about the impact of the Republican plan, American Health Care Act (AHCA). While the CBO and the staff of the Joint Committee on Taxation (JCT) reported the budgetary effects of AHCA would equate to “$323 billion in on-budget savings”, the insurance losses —14 million more people, many of whom are covered under Medicaid expansion, would suffer under the new legislation in 2018 — seems to outweigh the budgetary gains. PHANYC continues to do their part to prevent the repeal of ACA by signing online petitions to prevent the repeal of key programs under ACA and marching in the NYC Scientists’ March in April.

While the name of our organization accurately reflects our primary focus: public health in New York City,  we are not exclusively New York City-oriented as some of our members work in global health.  This issue features interviews with Debra Jackson, RN, MPH, DSc, Senior Health Specialist in Knowledge Management and Implementation Research Unit/UNICEF, who currently works for UNICEF and has been stationed all over the globe promoting exclusive breastfeeding programming as well as other maternal child health programs, and with Lovelyne Julien, MPH, MPA, who flew to Haiti to do recovery work  in the aftermath of Hurricane Matthew. Readers can also find Lovelyne’s story on the bioethical and legal debate of Aid In Dying featured here. In addition to Lovelyne’s article, issue two offers an update on national and state-based policy initiatives in which PHANYC has been engaged: specifically, raising the age for criminal responsibility in New York State and opposing the defunding of the Prevention and Public Health Fund.

In this issue, we introduce you to some of our board members who are positively impacting the functioning of the health care system for both patients and employees.  Dr. Steven Auerbach, MD, MPH, FAAP, a physician at HRSA specializing in healthcare workforce distribution, also serves on the board of Physicians for a National Health Program. Lauren Broussard, MSW, MPH, a doctoral candidate at the Mailman School of Public Health at Columbia University,  is an outspoken advocate for maintaining a focus on health equity and social justice. I would also like to mention that three new members recently joined the PHANYC board: Alison Braid, Moria Byrne-Zaaloff, and Lovelyne Julien.  Each has already left a large footprint on the organization in general and on this issue of Public Health Voices, in particular.

Finally, I want to remind you to save  two important dates. The first is PHANYC’s annual members meeting  on June 1st in the late afternoon/early evening.  This event will include a guest speaker, presentations by students who are doing original research for their MPH degrees at various institutions in the New York City area, a formal election for our three new board members, and an announcement about some leadership changes within the board. The other is the NYC March for Science on April 22nd.  We invite you to join us as we demonstrate our passion for science and tour support for the scientific community. Click on our Facebook page to march with us.

Thank you for taking the time to read our publication and watch as PHANYC continues to learn and grow and spread its wings.  We welcome feedback: send us your comments, questions, concerns, and suggestions at

Happy Reading!

PHANYC President