Public Health Nurse

Community health and prevention services

Personal Health Services

Personal Health Services is a critical component of the DeKalb County Board of Health. PHS strives to provide high quality, personal and preventive and primary care services to the diverse clients who live, work, and play in DeKalb County (DeKalb County Board of Health, n.d.).  PHS is offered at six health centers:  South DeKalb Health Center, Kirkwood Health Center, North DeKalb Health Center, East DeKalb Health Center, Vinson Health Center, and Richardson Health Center.  The centers are strategically located in order to ensure all parts of the county have access to the care and services available to the citizens of the community (DeKalb County Board of Health, n.d.).

There are three broad categories of PHS at the DeKalb County Board of Health:

  • Clinical Care
  • Outreach
  • Case management

Clinical care

Clinic care services provided within the health centers include immunizations, dental services, nutrition education and counseling, family planning and pregnancy prevention services, and primary care services.

Adult services are also offered within each health center.  The adult services included:

  • Testing for sexually transmitted diseases
  • Contraceptive, family planning and gynecological services
  • Pregnancy testing, counseling, and referrals
  • Cancer screening for women
  • Hypertension screening, medication management and counseling
  • Adult immunizations

Services for the children at the DeKalb County Health Centers include:

  • Early and periodic screening exams
  • Dental services
  • Routine immunizations
  • Hearing and vision testing
  • Primary care services

As undergraduate nursing students, you will be afforded the opportunity to experience a public health nurse’s role in several departments at the DeKalb County Board of Health Centers.  Information regarding the departments and the role of the public health nurse in each area can be found by clicking on the link provided:

Other clinical care services offered at various DeKalb County Health Centers are: occupational health services, sexually transmitted disease services, and dental screenings and treatment.


PHS offers a wide range of outreach services.  Many of the programs and services are developed in conjunction with families, schools, communities and other public and private organizations. Outreach settings include homes, schools, senior centers, day care centers, churches, recreation centers, shopping malls and community facilities. The Adolescent Health and Youth Development Program is one successful example of the benefits of collaboration with communities.  Three health centers are affiliated with the off-site Teen Centers that offer preventive and primary care services and various youth development activities during non-traditional hours.

Providing public health services within schools is another major outreach effort DeKalb County Health Centers support.  They offer immunizations and hearing, vision and dental screenings within schools.  Public health nurses continually seek to identify actions that can be taken to improve the health status of school-age children in DeKalb County.

Case Management:

There are several case management programs offered at the DeKalb County Health Centers.  Such programs are vital to the health of vulnerable populations within the community.

The Prenatal Case Management program helps pregnant women maximize their chances for having healthy pregnancies and healthy babies.  Expectant women and their families receive individual assessments and follow-up throughout the pregnancy.  The emphasis is on linking pregnant women with prenatal care and other needed medical and social services.

The Children with Special Needs program serves children who have medical or developmental conditions that require ongoing treatment and case management.  Children with Special Needs is comprised of two parts:

  • Babies Can’t Waitprovides case management and services to infants and toddlers who have a medically established risk for developmental delay and to those who are found to have delays.  The program offers up to 16 different services to families based on the individual needs of the child.
  • Children’s Medical Servicesprovides services to all children up to age 21 who have chronic medical conditions such as cerebral palsy, diabetes, cardiac conditions, genetic disorders and permanent hearing and vision problems.  The program provides family case management and financial support when no other resources are available.