Retention of Local Public Health Workforce Continues to Pose Major Challenge

Thursday, February 21st, 2008
This post was written by Melanie Matthews

The local public health workforce in New York State is older than the average age of the U.S. civilian workforce, and nearly one in five public health workers plans to retire within five years, according to a study by the Center for Health Workforce Studies at the University at Albany’s School of Public Health. The survey was conducted in 32 of the 57 county health departments across the state, not including New York City.

  • Not only are large numbers of older employees planning on retiring soon, but 20 percent of public health workers under 35 plan to leave the field within the next five years.
  • The median age of a local public health worker is 49, compared to the median age of a U.S. civilian worker of 40. Sixty-two percent of local public health workers are between ages 45 and 64.

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