Board of Health
County Boards of Health were created by Georgia Law in 1914. The law establishes a Board in each county in the state and is the basis upon which the statewide public health department The Tattnall County Board of Health consists of seven members appointed according to law.
By law, County Boards of Health have broad and comprehensive functions and responsibilities in their counties. The board of health is required to:
- Determine the health needs and resources of its jurisdiction by research and by collection, analysis, and evaluation of all data pertaining to the health of the community;
- Develop, in cooperation with the department, programs, activities and facilities responsive to the needs of its area;
- Secure compliance with the rules and regulations of the department that have local application;
- Enforce all laws pertaining to health unless the responsibility for the enforcement of such laws is that of another county or state agency.
The duties of individual Board members are varied and include the following:
- Consistent involvement and attendance at meetings;
- Being a spokesperson in the community for the Board of Health on health issues, and an advocate for healthy lifestyles;
- Becoming knowledgeable about the health status and issues of the county and the services provided by their health department and those provided by the lead county on behalf of the community;
- Board members should also be aware of the laws in Georgia on conflicts of interest, open records and open meetings. These ethics laws and “sunshine laws” are applicable to County Boards of Health and their members. Boards of Health should encourage public attendance at all of their meetings to help build public support for public health programs.