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K-State Today

February 1, 2019

Kansas State University team contributes policy chapter to new book on public health education competencies

By Joe Montgomery

A multidisciplinary team of professors and a former research assistant from Kansas State University have just mastered a chapter on laws and regulations for a new book for the Council on Education for Public Health.

The team includes Ellyn Mulcahy, director of the Master of Public Health program and associate professor of diagnostic medicine and pathobiology; Justin Kastner, associate professor of diagnostic medicine and pathobiology; Jason Ackleson, adjunct faculty in diagnostic medicine and pathobiology; Sara Gragg, assistant professor of animal sciences and industry; and Danny Unruh, former research assistant in animal sciences and industry.

The name of the textbook is "Master of Public Health Competencies: A Case Study Approach;" edited by Anthony Santella, associate professor of health professions at Hofstra University, Hempstead, New York. The book features 22 chapters contributed by public health professors and scientists from a variety of major universities, hospitals and health departments.

The chapter by the K-State team is titled, "Developing Primary Laws and Secondary Regulations for Food Safety: The Case of FSMA and Its Attendant Rules." Kastner said while Master of Public Health students would certainly benefit from the chapter, he thinks lay readers will be interested in the history and trajectory of U.S. food safety policy too.

"As educators involved in several of K-State's graduate programs (public health, veterinary medicine, food science, etc.), we mentor public health-minded students of all kinds — but especially those interested in food safety," Kastner said. "Our graduates, including those from the Manhattan, Global and Olathe campuses, have gone on to work in the government and private-industry sectors. This chapter, masterfully superintended by Unruh, will help future generations of students better understand the interconnected themes of lawmaking, regulation, surveillance, liability and business practice."

"As contributors to this book, our interdisciplinary team is part of a larger public health training and education community at K-State," Mulcahy said. "We appreciate not only the opportunity to work together as a team, but also to contribute K-State expertise toward a national conversation on the importance and impact of policy on public health."

"Regulation plays a key role in how priorities are assigned and resources are deployed, in public health and elsewhere," Unruh said. "Hopefully, this chapter will give students of public health a tangible example of the importance of participation in the federal rule-making process and will illuminate the many agencies and organizations involved therein."

The book, in press for 2019, will be published by Jones and Bartlett Learning, a provider of instructional, assessment and learning-performance management solutions for the secondary, postsecondary and professional markets.