Members of the Florida Department of Health and Florida legislature formally celebrated 125 years of public health efforts in the state in February 2014. Florida owes much of its population growth over the years to the efforts of public health officials who have helped to control disease and improve environmental health standards in the state.
Efforts to improve public health continue in the 21st century with such proactive programs as Healthiest Weight Florida and Tobacco Free Florida. Within 18 months of launching the Healthiest Weight program, Florida increased it’s ranking to become one of the top 15 states in the nation in terms of having the healthiest average weight among residents.
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To keep the residents of Florida healthy, the state budgeted more than $376 million to address public health issues in fiscal year 2013-14, while additional funding from the CDC totaled more than $345 million. Such high levels of funding have a direct effect on the state’s ability to offer higher salaries as a way to attract the most qualified public health professionals.
In addition to such public health measures as using epidemiologists to track the incidence of diseases, the Department of Health emphasizes emergency preparedness, response, and training. Public health officials responded swiftly to an incidence of MERS in May 2014—only the second case in the US.
As of 2014, 54 of Florida’s counties had met national standards for public health preparedness related to emergency response. Public health employees and volunteers even worked with the Department of Homeland Security for Joint Counterterrorism Awareness Workshops. The 2013 National Health Security Preparedness Index ranked Florida’s preparations for health security threats to be well above the national average.
The stated vision of the Florida Department of Health is to be the healthiest state in the nation. This has state and local public health officials working in concert with stakeholders such as non-governmental organizations, academic researchers, and other public policy experts to keep the residents of Florida healthy and well prepared for whatever the future may bring.
Salary Comparison for Public Health Professionals in Miami
The Florida Department of Economic Opportunity provides detailed salary information for the public health officials located in the Miami area in 2014. While there is a significant amount of variation in these salaries, professionals with advanced credentials such as a Master of Public Health typically comprise the experienced category.
A Statewide Salary Analysis of Public Health Professionals in Florida
The US Bureau of Labor Statistics provides a detailed analysis of the hourly wages and annual salaries of public health professionals in Florida as of 2014.