YOLANDA FONG, A SUPERVISOR OF CHRONIC DISEASE PREVENTION WITH PUBLIC HEALTH
WCN: How would you describe a “day in the life” of a public health nurse?
My job is ever-changing. I don’t do direct care; instead, I supervise programs that work to prevent chronic diseases in the community. Chronic disease is long-term, associated with many risk factors, and in most cases, cannot be cured. Heart disease, stroke, cancer and diabetes are some of the most common chronic diseases we address in public health.
WCN: What are your top three responsibilities that you would highlight?
I work to make the community a healthier place to live, learn, work and play. I do this in partnership with a wide verity of community organizations and members. For example, I recently worked on putting together a resource for teachers and staff in early learning centers to promote healthy eating and physical activity in the classroom. I often find myself in places that people would not traditional expect to see a nurse. For example, we are currently working with cities to promote health.
WCN: How could students get a nursing role like yours in the future?
It is beneficial to have a least a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree, especially from a program that has a strong community health rotation.