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Public Health Salaries in Texas

Between the state and federal government, public health spending in Texas totaled more than $1.5 billion in fiscal year 2013-14. Public health spending at this level positively impacts the state’s ability to create much-needed public health jobs and offer top salaries.

While many public health officials in Texas work for government agencies at the county level, the Department of State Health Services (DSHS) acts at the state level to coordinate efforts between stakeholders, coalitions, and communities to improve public health throughout Texas.

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Preventing chronic and infectious diseases is just one way the DSHS does this, and its anti-smoking efforts have born fruit. The rate of this habit decreased 13% between 2013 and 2014. Immunization coverage among children also increased substantially during this time frame.

Epidemiologists with the DSHS specialize in research concerning infectious disease and the efficacy of treatment. Given the large number of international travelers, Texas is vulnerable to outbreaks of tuberculosis, with 1,222 cases discovered in 2013 alone. The DSHS is also highly proactive in tracking instances of acute pesticide exposure resulting from occupational exposure. The state’s Pesticide Exposure Surveillance in Texas (PEST) program proactively monitors the level of insecticide, fungicide, rodenticide, and herbicide found in the environment.

Stakeholders in public health in Texas include state, federal, and local officials in addition to those in non-governmental organizations, academia, and healthcare facilities – all of which work in concert to ensure the health and safety of Texas’s residents.

Public Health Professional Salary Analysis for Houston

The Texas Workforce Commission provides the salaries for a number of public health professionals in the Houston area for 2014. Since highly educated professionals such as those with a Master of Public Health are likely to be experienced, their salaries tend to fall on the high end of these ranges:

Public Health Profession
Experienced Annual Salary
Community and Social Services: Health Educators
$66417
Community and Social Services: Healthcare Social Workers
$67397
Community and Social Services: Rehabilitation Counselors
$46549
Community and Social Services: Substance Abuse & Behavioral Disorder Counselors
$49058
Computers and Mathematics: Statisticians
$90455
Engineers: Health & Safety Engineers
$131764
Healthcare Practitioners: Occupational Health & Safety Specialists
$99287
Life and Social Sciences: Biological Scientists
$75387
Life and Social Sciences: Environmental Scientists & Specialists
$107599
Life and Social Sciences: Epidemiologists
$68024
Life and Social Sciences: Microbiologists
$71865
Life and Social Sciences: Social Science Research Assistants
$54080
Life and Social Sciences: Social Scientists
$87582
Public Administration: Social & Community Service Managers
$80858

Analysis of Public Health Professional Salaries Statewide

The US Bureau of Labor Statistics provides a detailed breakdown of hourly wages and annual salaries by percentile for a wide range of public health professions in Texas (2014):

Occupation
Employment
Annual mean wage
Social and Community Service Managers
4560
67070
Statisticians
1060
80930
Mining and Geological Engineers Including Mining Safety Engineers
890
143370
Microbiologists
690
54900
Biological Scientists All Other
1570
68780
Epidemiologists
400
61510
Environmental Scientists and Specialists Including Health
6480
77480
Sociologists
100
37830
Social Scientists and Related Workers All Other
1930
74410
Social Science Research Assistants
1050
38350
Substance Abuse and Behavioral Disorder Counselors
4040
38350
Rehabilitation Counselors
3960
39910
Healthcare Social Workers
8600
56090
Health Educators
2490
52660
Community Health Workers
3470
35270
Occupational Health and Safety Specialists
8030
73270

*Figures are at or above $90 an hour or $187,199 per year. The US Bureau of Labor Statistics does not report salaries beyond these levels.

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