Cornerstone Documents, Milestones, and Policies: Shaping the Direction of Public Health Nursing 1890-1950

Joan Kub, Pamela A. Kulbok, Doris Glick

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


The interplay of policy, milestone events, and cornerstone documents was critical in the evolution of the specialty of public health nursing (PHN) from 1890-1950. Using our contemporary lens, this article examines PHN development from an historical perspective, including events and milestones driving growth in the early 20th century. Some of the challenges faced by our founding public health nursing leadership are not unlike challenges we face today. In 1950, Ruth Hubbard, a former leader in the National Organization of Public Health Nurses and Director of the Visiting Nurse Society of Philadelphia, spoke of the value of examining the past to forge a new future. This article calls for contemporary public health nurses to act upon the lessons learned from the past, to strengthen the renewed focus on prevention, to develop policies that impact population health, and to foster a vision that will guide us into the future.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3
Number of pages1
JournalOnline Journal of Issues in Nursing
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - May 31 2015


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Issues, ethics and legal aspects

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