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Press Release

Release Date: April 06, 2021
by Chickasaw Nation Media Relations Office

The first full week of April is National Public Health Week (NPHW), a time to recognize the contributions of public health and highlight issues important to improving the nation's health.

The Chickasaw Nation Department of Research and Public Health has planned seven days of videos highlighting the programs and services the Chickasaw Nation offers to promote public health in celebration of NPHW, April 5-11.

Each day of the week will bring a new theme and fresh virtual content available to the public at no charge and available at

For community members, it is a time to pick up useful information on how to live healthfully and help others in the community do the same.

This year’s campaign is centered on “Building Bridges to Better Health.” Event coordinators believe, given the physical distance often separating us during the COVID-19 pandemic, it is all the more important to collaborate for better public health.

Sheryl Goodson, executive officer of primary care clinics and public health for the Chickasaw Nation, introduces the public to the series. She explains what public health is all about and explores how the Chickasaw Nation pursues it.

“Public health is the health of the population as a whole. It’s actually a branch of medicine dealing with the science of protecting and improving the health of people in the community,” Goodson says.

She points to guiding principles like “united we thrive” to show how this year’s theme of “building bridges to better health,” is apparent within the Chickasaw Nation.

“There are many programs across the tribe that are public health programs, whether it be a nutrition program, a mental wellness program, a physical activity program,” she said. “There’s a lot of knowledge out there, and we’re just bringing services and programs to people to take advantage of that.”

Other experts and professionals from the Chickasaw Nation are featured in subsequent videos. They serve in and represent areas such as health care, research, epidemiology, health promotion, child wellness and nursing, as well as campaigns empowering youth and combating drug abuse.

Their topics will include rebuilding, eliminating health disparities, strengthening community, environmental wellness, constructing COVID-19 resilience, uplifting mental health and wellness, and elevating the health workforce.

NPHW began a quarter century ago. It is organized by the American Public Health Association and brought to action locally by groups across the country, such as the Chickasaw Nation. More information can be found at