NY launches free citizen public health training program

Posted 5 May 2021 at 7:04 am

Press Release, Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s Office

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo on Tuesday announced the Citizen Public Health Training Course for New Yorkers to learn about preparedness for and prevention of public health emergencies from top public health experts will open today.

This free, online course, delivered by the New York State Department of Health in partnership with Cornell University and supported by the State University of New York, will prepare and equip New Yorkers to become NYS Citizen Public Health Leaders and build an informed network of community health leaders across the state.

Program participants will learn about Covid-19, public health emergency preparedness and response, and other public health issues, while gaining insight into information and resources that will benefit their communities. Those interested in enrolling or getting more information about becoming a NYS Citizen Public Health Leader can visit the program website by clicking here.

“We are determined to build back better, and part of that is making sure we are better prepared for the next pandemic,” Governor Cuomo said. “This innovative free program was developed by trusted experts and it will empower everyday New Yorkers with critical knowledge to better protect themselves, their families and their neighbors from public health emergencies.”

This training, developed by Cornell University’s Master of Public Health Program and delivered through eCornell, is a four-part online training program to equip New Yorkers with expertise and tools to help build and support community-led initiatives surrounding prevention, detection and response in the event of public health emergencies.

Upon completion of the training, participants will be designated a “NYS Citizen Public Health Leader” and will be informed about how they can volunteer in support of their local public health operations – especially during emergencies – as well as how to find, use and share verified information about public health matters from reliable sources. The course will be available through 2023.

This program was first announced as part of the Governor’s 2021 State of the State proposal. Throughout the Covid-19 crisis, New Yorkers were asked to do their part to fight a virus in ways they had never done before.

Everyone was given a crash course in virology, learning to properly wash their hands, sanitize their homes and businesses, and safely care for their family and neighbors. Thousands of New Yorkers signed up and were trained to be contract tracers, helping to track and mitigate the spread of the virus. When other states needed help, these New Yorkers heeded the call and brought their new public health skills to the rest of the country. This new training will help New Yorkers gain the tools to protect themselves, their families and others against future health emergencies.