The Utah Public Health Association (UPHA) was organized and held its first annual meeting May 1916 in Salt Lake City, Utah. Of interest, the first President of UPHA was a prominent businessman and President of a bank. Honorary vice-presidents included the Governor of Utah and a US Senator, and as noted in the minutes they were both in attendance at the first meeting. Members of the Board of Directors included the Director of the State Health Dept., the Bishop of the Salt Lake Diocese of the Catholic Church, three members of the leadership of the LDS (Mormon) Church, a State Senator, three physicians and one City Mayor.
Since the inception, the roots of UPHA have always had the focus, mission, and dedication to promoting quality public health programming, advocating for sound public health policy and collaborating with community partners to protect the health of the citizens and the environment. As an example, the first years of the UPHA business and community activities were spent in a combined effort with the American Red Cross and National Tuberculosis Association fighting the TB epidemic. In July of 1917, the Association was prominent in fighting against an epidemic of Typhoid Fever in Salt Lake County.
In May 1927, the first full week of the month was dedicated to promoting and conducting public health activities throughout the State. Could this have been the first “Public Health Week” held in the country?
In 1964, the UPHA Articles of Incorporation were written and approved and the Association was declared a non-profit association recognized by the State of Utah. The stated purpose in the Articles is “…an organization for the purpose of aiding in the promotion and protection of the health of the people, to extend and develop health services for the people of the State of Utah, and to provide for scientific advancement”.
In 2010 UPHA changed its federal non-profit status from a 501(c)(6) designation to a 501(c)(3) public charity and obtained from the State of Utah exemption from sales and use taxes.
Today UPHA is still dedicated to promoting quality public health policy and providing public health advocacy and education for its members and the people of Utah as declared by our purpose statement.
Our Mission Statement is: “Working for a healthier Utah through advocacy, education and collaboration with public, private and community partners.”
UPHA continues to strive for the achievement of our goals in five areas of focus:
1. Promoting a healthy environment;
2. Providing proactive advocacy of public health policy;
3. Promoting services which address personal health needs;
4. Keeping the community well informed about issues of public health;
5. Supporting a committed, educated and effective public health professional work force.
For nearly 100 years the Utah Public Health Association has been a leader in public health policy advocacy, improving public health practice and providing professional development opportunities for members and the public health community. We are committed to continuing the legacy that is ours, to make UPHA a strong, effective, and independent voice for public health throughout the State of Utah and make our presence known throughout the country.
UPHA is a premier public health organization in the state of Utah.
We welcome your interest in public health and encourage
with us as we improve the health of Utahns.
Utah Public Health Association
PO Box 9387
Millcreek, UT 84109
3670 Highland Drive, Suite 434