Rhode Island’s high immunization rate among children and teens along with a ready availability of primary care physicians led the United Health Foundation to rank the state as the 15th healthiest in the US in 2014. In fact, the state had the highest level of child immunization coverage in the country that year.
The state of Rhode Island spent more than $53.2 million on public health in fiscal year 2013-14. In addition, it received more than $35.5 million from the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) and more than $36.2 million from the Health Resources and Services Administration in fiscal year 2014. The availability of funding directly impacts the state’s ability to hire the public health professionals it needs, and helps to ensure that their salaries remain highly competitive.
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The Rhode Island Department of Public Health works to improve public health through education, and initiatives designed to directly address the most pressing public health and environmental health concerns. Epidemiologists working with this department monitor 35 types of infectious diseases and provide reports on their findings, which are used to develop educational campaigns and preventative measures. In addition, environmental health specialists with the Food, Water & Environment Division help members of the public to monitor such critical health hazards as lead, asbestos, and radon.
In addition to public health officials at the state level, those at the local level work in concert with NGO workers, healthcare providers, and academic researchers.
A Look at Public Health Salaries in Providence
The Rhode Island Department of Labor and Training provides salary ranges for a number of public health professionals who were employed in the Providence/Fall River/Warwick area in 2014. Professionals with advanced degrees such as a Master of Public Health are more likely to earn salaries at the high end of the ranges shown here:
A Comparison of Salaries Among Public Health Professionals in Rhode Island
In fiscal year 2015, a public health epidemiologist with the state of Rhode Island earned $53,539, while a senior public health epidemiologist made $60,434.
The salaries for a number of other public health professions in Rhode Island are available from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, as shown in the table below (2014):