North Carolina
Public Health nursing

Welcome to your one-stop-shop for information, training, job openings, and resources regarding public health nursing in North Carolina.

Please scroll to bottom of each page to review all information.

A message from Dr. Susan Haynes Little, DNP, MSN, RN, PHNA-BC, CPH, CPM, FAAN Chief Public Health Nurse, NC Division of Public Health:

North Carolina Public Health Nursing has had a rich history of leadership in the Office of Public Health Nursing and I am honored to have officially taken the helm as of November 2019.  As the new Chief Public Health Nurse, my hope is to lead the Office of Public Health Nursing by continuing to provide the support state and local public health nursing leaders and staff are accustomed to from the NC Division of Public Health.

I have a long history of public health nursing practice beginning in 1996 as a TB/HIV/STD nurse at the New Hanover County Health Department. I have since worked in many clinical and population health programs at local health departments and at the state.  As many of you know, for me work is play and play is work and I also spend a great amount of time outside of my regular work responsibilities advocating for public health nursing practice.  As an active member of many state and national public health nursing organizations, I continually advocate for full scope of public health nursing practice and high-quality standards and competencies.  I serve on several NC Board of Nursing Advisory Boards/Committees and invest time promoting high quality academic preparation with an emphasis in community and public health nursing by serving as adjunct faculty for both UNC Chapel Hill and Duke Schools of Nursing.

Please do not hesitate to reach out to me if you have any questions and thank you for all you do to promote and protect the health of North Carolinians.

Dr. Susan Haynes Little




The North Carolina Public Health Nurse Recruitment & Retention Study

The NC Public Health Nurse Recruitment & Retention Study is an ongoing project with the goal of creating an inclusive public health nurse workforce in North Carolina. The project began with a study of non-supervisory public health nurses across North Carolina to examine retention of NC PHNs. The research from this seminal study, authored by Isley et. al., can be read via open-access in Public Health Nursing, the official journal of the Council of Public Health Nursing Organizations. The article, “To stay or leave: public health nurse workforce retention in North Carolina” can be viewed here.

The project continues as evidence from the study is translated into practice.

Dr. Jaimee Watts-Isley and Dr. Susan Haynes Little, Chief Public Health Nurse present an award-winning poster at the Annual Public Health Association 2021 Annual Meeting. Watch this short video for information on how the NC PHN Recruitment & Retention study will be translated into practice.

North Carolina’s PHNs are leading in the COVID-19 pandemic at the local, state, and national levels through advocacy, policy, and practice.  PHNs were the first nurses involved in COVID-19 response, well before the first case was diagnosed in our great state.  Since the state Office of Public Health Nursing was established over a century ago, PHN nurse leaders have led in responses to public health threats, addressing population health, writing public health policy, and designing programs and services to meet the health needs of North Carolina’s residents. Even while facing severe workforce shortages after years of declining investment in public health services in the state and across the nation, North Carolina’s PHNs continue to demonstrate their indispensable expertise as specialists in population health, particularly in the face of the global pandemic.  Read this hot-off-the-press article written by NC PHN leaders Drs. Vaughan, Kneipp, and Little for The Tarheel Nurse, the official publication of the North Carolina Nurses Association.  (NCNA members can access the full publication here.)

Download & read (PDF)


Frequently Asked Questions

Safe, effective COVID-19 vaccines will help us defeat this virus, get back in control of our lives and back to the people and places we love.

The COVID-19 vaccine is available to everyone for free, whether or not you have
health insurance and regardless of your immigration status. Everyone in North Carolina 6 months and older is eligible to get a vaccine.

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