July Physician Focus TV: Local Boards of Health

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June 25, 2014

Contact: Richard P. Gulla
781-434-7101

Waltham, Mass. -- June 25 -- They are present in every community, and their work is critical to every citizen’s health and well-being.  For more than 200 years, ever since 1799 when Paul Revere was appointed chairman of the Commonwealth’s first board of health in Boston, local boards of health have been providing for the public’s health and safety. 

Yet with the exception perhaps of annual flu clinics, it’s likely that much of the work of the boards remains invisible to most citizens. 

The July episode of Physician Focus with the Massachusetts Medical takes an in-depth look at local boards of health with senior officials of the Massachusetts Association of Health Boards (MAHB). 

Guests are Christopher Quinn, M.D., MAHB President, a physician with the Attleboro Health Department, and Director of Occupational Health Services at Sturdy Memorial Hospital in Attleboro, and Ms. Cheryl Sbarra, Esq., Senior Staff Attorney for MAHB, who provides legal consultation, policy guidance and technical assistance to boards of health and municipal governments throughout the Commonwealth. Hosting this program is B. Dale Magee, M.D., a past president of the Massachusetts Medical Society.

The discussion examines the responsibilities of the boards, their enforcement powers, how they’re managed and operated, the challenges they face in performing their duties, how they balance individual rights and behaviors while maintaining standards of health and safety for the entire community, and how they relate to other local and state agencies, such as the Massachusetts Department of Public Health.    

Physician Focus is a noncommercial production of the Massachusetts Medical Society and Hopkinton (Mass.) Community Access Television, HCAM-TV.  Now in its tenth year, the monthly half-hour program brings viewers health and medical information on timely topics from physicians and other healthcare experts. Distributed as a public service, the program reaches more than 275 communities in Massachusetts each month through the courtesy of public access television stations. For details on the program, visit www.physicianfocus.org


The Massachusetts Medical Society, with more than 24,000 physicians and student members, is dedicated to educating and advocating for the patients and physicians of Massachusetts. The Society, under the auspices of NEJM Group, publishes the New England Journal of Medicine, a leading global medical journal and web site, and NEJM Journal Watch alerts and publications covering 13 specialties. The Society is also a leader in continuing medical education for health care professionals throughout Massachusetts, conducting a variety of medical education programs for physicians and health care professionals. Founded in 1781, MMS is the oldest continuously operating medical society in the country.

HCAM-TV was founded April 1, 2004 by the Board of Selectmen of the Town of Hopkinton as a nonprofit corporation to manage local access to cable broadcast facilities. For information on HCAM, visit http://www.hcam.tv 

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