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Published April 4, 2022

Position Details

Position Title:  Public Health Director
Organization:  Sanders County
Department:  Public Health
Salary/Pay Rate:  Starting rate of $22.00, depending on experience and qualifications
Closing Date:  Open until filled

Position Description


Sanders County is seeking to hire a Public Health Director. This position provides comprehensive nursing services in preventive health, home health, and clinic programs through assessment, teaching, counseling, and prevention services to individuals, families, and groups to promote health and wellness to clients. This includes administering public health programs, maintaining patient and program activity records, preparing required reports and obtaining adequate public health funding.

Work Unit Overview

Full time Position. All county departments must maintain an open and customer service oriented environment, cooperate with other County departments and governmental entities, and keep accurate and timely records and information.

The Sanders County Health Department protects and promotes the health of county citizens and the environment through the efforts of dedicated and skilled employees and application of sound public health principle. The Public Health Department’s role is to protect, improve and preserve the health and well-being of the citizens of Sanders County.

Essential Functions (Major Duties or Responsibilities)

These duties are the essential functions and are not all-inclusive of all duties that the incumbent performs.

  • Identify health needs in the community to create and facilitate programs to promote health and welfare. Assess community health strengths, needs, and expectations to adopt a plan to utilize available medical resources and standards of nursing practices to serve families and individuals through health promotion and to serve those who are at risk of illness, injury, disability, or death.
  • Provide nursing services to individuals to prevent illness, disability, or premature death. Perform physical assessments, obtaining blood pressure, temperature, measurements, etc. Retrieve information on health histories, diet histories, and family health histories. Read and interpret lab reports, administer tests, and perform a variety of related procedures.
  • Investigate and monitor reports of communicable diseases such as measles, hepatitis, sexually transmitted diseases, and tuberculosis. Coordinate efforts with physicians, school personnel, and others regarding the treatment and prevention of diseases.
  • Provide health education, health promotion, health assessment, and disease prevention activities in the community to increase community awareness of the value of public health in the County. This includes representing the Department at various community activities.
  • Implement strategies to obtain sustainable public health funding for the delivery of quality services and programs that meet the needs of the community members. Identify funding sources; apply for grants; stay current about funding at the local, state, and national level; promote long-term funding planning; and identify opportunities to expand billable services.
  • Ensure that any programs administered by the Health Department operate in compliance with state and Federal standards, policies, guidelines, and/or grant provisions. This includes monitoring and tracking demographic data on participants, compiling reports, and administering necessary budgets.
  • Ensure that clinical documentation regarding clients is secure, confidential, and maintained in compliance with Health Department policy and state and federal regulation.
  • Review the strategic plans of the County on a yearly basis to ensure they meet community health needs and that services are coordinated to maximize the effective use of resources and personnel.
  • Provides direct nursing care to Maternal Child Health Makes referrals to local health care providers, agencies and human services organizations; provides immunizations to children and adults using standing orders in the clinical setting.
  • Functions as the Competent Professional Authority for the WIC program. Provides nutritional instruction to participants, parents and other care providers in compliance with state WIC program policies. Documents all visits and instruction provided to participants, parents or care providers.  Provides clinical consultation to WIC aide to assure quality of care and improved patient outcomes.
  • Completes WIC certification visits, explaining nutritional risk codes, and develops a nutritional goal for WIC participants.
  • Coordinates the local Fetal Infant, Child Maternal, Child Mortality Review (FICMR) process, facilitates team meetings, maintains team membership, translates review findings into prevention initiatives at the community level, and completes the state tool for data gathering purposes.
  • Provides population based education on a variety of topics in many settings, including schools.
  • Acts as a patient advocate in the community and with other health care providers. Uses motivational counseling techniques to demonstrate positive, supportive and caring behaviors in communications with patients, families, and other health care providers and agency personnel
  • Responsible for all facets of public health preparedness planning for the local jurisdiction, including the SNS plan, the Pandemic Influenza Plan, working with the LEPC, OEM and state agency personnel on preparedness issues, developing or participating in exercises.
  • Responsible for all aspects of communicable disease follow-up including surveillance, epidemiology, case investigation, and prevention. Reports cases to the Department of Public Health and Human Services Communicable Disease Section in concurrence with Montana state Legal authority described in statutes and rules.
  • Oversees all aspects of the delivery of services to the community and ongoing efforts to improve those services, develops specific objectives for continual quality improvement of performance, using information from quality measurement and satisfaction surveys to establish objectives and strategies.
  • Interprets administrative policies, programs and standards for staff and the community.
  • Initiates relationships, clarifies public health nursing programs and develops relationships with state organizations and agencies.
  • Functions as the WIC Director and liaison for the MCH, Tobacco Prevention, Public Health Preparedness and Immunization contracts. Develops or oversees the development of the annual plan for the programs which outlines project priorities, activities, implementation and evaluating criteria.
  • Assesses public health needs and trends, current service delivery models, programs strategies, and implements changes to meet the needs of target populations using local, state and national data sources.
  • Collaborates with the program assistant to develop the WIC budget, tobacco prevention specialist to develop the tobacco program budget and develops the budget for the entire department and other contracts.
  • Completes the annual plan (including budget) which outlines goals, activities, implementation and evaluation for the Maternal/Child Health, Immunization, and Preparedness grants.
  • Completes all public health program budgets, monitors expenditures and completes all monthly, quarterly and annual expenditure reports to be submitted to contractors or grantees.
  • Manages, directs and supervises the entire operation of the Public Health Department.
  • Instructs staff in proper procedures of their respective jobs and inspects work in progress and makes suggestions or issues directives for improvement.
  • Responsible for all aspects of personnel management for the department including advertising open position, interviewing potential candidates, hiring, conducting periodic evaluations of performance and disciplinary actions as appropriate. Assesses training needs of staff, offers training opportunities as appropriate for staff job duties and accountabilities.
  • Approves staff vacations and leaves, schedules staff to various job duties as indicated by staff skills and job tasks.
  • Interacts frequently with other organizations, agencies and health care providers in the local jurisdiction, State Agencies, Federal agencies, Local Governmental Agencies, Private Businesses and the general public to promote the mission of the Sanders County Health Department.
  • Attends community meetings as appropriate for position, to promote the missions of the department and to clarify health department role and responsibilities.
  • Prepares and conducts community awareness campaigns using the following strategies:
    • Radio Programs; Newspaper articles; Class instruction
    • Civic groups, local Chamber of Commerce groups
    • Support groups, volunteer agencies
    • Local Emergency Planning Committee
    • County Commissioners, Mayors, City Councils, Board of Health
    • Businesses
    • Local hospital and health care providers
    • Local state senator and representatives
  • Attends all Board of Health meetings as the Public Health Director.
  • Coordinates the performance of duties of Health Department staff to ensure compliance with safety and security standards.
  • Implements safety program to enhance staff awareness of potential hazards in the Health Department.
  • Ensures that the Health Department staff utilizes personal protective equipment while completing tasks that may be hazardous. Must be cognizant of safety hazards pertaining to Health Department Office and work to remedy identified safety hazards.
  • Schedules and performs safety training sessions on a regular basis for Health Department staff.
  • Participates in informative training sessions for other courthouse and county personnel. Must be a participant in the Sanders County Safety Committee.
  • The Public Health Director assures the vision, mission and values of Sanders County Health Department are understood throughout the department and by the residents it serves.
  • The Public Health Director acts as the principle organizational leader, through performance of strategic, operational and communications functions and maintains accountability to the Board of Health for these functions.
  • Develops a collaborative relationship with the department staff, a strategic plan for the department, which includes a strategic vision and specific annual objectives for achieving goals

Non-Essential Functions:

  • Attend regional public health meetings and conferences, meet with regional partners, and negotiate agreements to maximize services available to County citizens.
  • Provide on-site services in the jail health program including health care and education on subjects including disease prevention, hygiene, and life issues to prisoners in the County jail.
  • Perform other duties as assigned including managing special projects, attending meetings and conferences, providing backup for other staff, participating in training, etc.

Physical Demands & Working Conditions

The demands and conditions described here are representative of those the employee must meet to perform the essential functions of the job.

  • The employee is constantly required to use hands to handle or feel objects and to keyboard.
  • Frequently required to sit, talk, write, listen and read.
  • The employee may infrequently be required to stand, walk, climb, balance, stoop, kneel, crouch or crawl and reach with hands and arms.
  • Specific vision abilities required by this job include close vision, distance vision, color vision, peripheral vision and depth perception.
  • The employee is infrequently required to lift and/or move up to 25 pounds.
  • The noise level of the office is usually moderate.
  • May involve occasional travel by auto to attend meetings with community partners.
  • If the employee is assigned to the Sheriff’s Department exposure to criminal and danger is a possibility.

Supervision Exercised

The primary function of this job is in a supervisory capacity; and the incumbent will be required to exercise supervision over other para-professionals, support staff, contract employees, etc.

Knowledge, Skills & Abilities

  • Knowledge of physical, biological and behavioral sciences.
  • Knowledge of public health principles and concepts, public health services in the area of maternal and child health, public health preparedness and communicable disease
  • Knowledge of nutritional principles and practices; of educational and learning theories.
  • Knowledge of health psychology theories, disease epidemiology
  • Knowledge of community assessments and program implementation and evaluation.
  • Knowledge of pertinent federal/state/local; laws, codes and regulations related to this position.
  • Ability to follow complex verbal and written instructions
  • Ability to use reason and logic to identify and solve problems concerning individuals’ mental or physical well-being, with families, with peers, and at a community level to develop solutions to problems
  • Ability to exercise independent professional judgment; to supervise and delegate work to others.
  • Ability to evaluate services and self-according to established standards.
  • Supervisory management techniques, methods, standards.
  • Intermediate computer skills, knowledge of common business applications
  • Skills in preparing and conducting community awareness campaigns
  • Ability to maintain professional practices in high stress situations
  • Ability to align behavior with the needs and goals of the public health organization and provide a role model for others
  • Communicate effectively to ensure that communication occurs at all organizational levels

Education & Experience

  • Associates or Bachelor’s Degree in Nursing required.
  • Valid Registered Nurse license to practice in the state of Montana
  • Current CPR Certification recommended
  • Two years of experience in Public Health and one year supervisory experience preferred

Health & Safety Responsibility

The safety and health responsibilities described herein are representative of those an employee will be responsible/accountable for while performing the essential functions of this job.  Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Carry out work in a manner so as not to create a health and safety hazard to yourself or others; suggest ways to eliminating hazards.
  • Assist in the reduction and controlling of accidents and illness producing conditions in work area by routinely conducting a visual inspection of the work area to identify unsafe work conditions and report time immediately to department supervisor.
  • Advise co-workers when he/ she is participating in an unsafe work practice. Report any unsafe work practices immediately to supervisor.
  • Report any incidents, near misses, injuries, or illnesses to immediate supervisor.
  • Develop a personal concern for health and safety — for yourself and for others, particularly new employee.
  • Read, understand, and comply with workplace health and safety policy, safe work practices and procedures.
  • Co-operate with health and safety committee members and representatives.
  • Should an injury occur during the course of the workday, report to your Supervisor and complete written Report of First Injury by the end of the work shift on the day injury occurs. Failure to complete and submit Report of First Injury that occurs during a work shift may result in progressive discipline being initiated.

Application Instructions

Documents Required

  • Letter of Interest to the Human Resources Department expressing consideration and describing qualifications. An e-mail is acceptable.

A copy of this job description is available for review at the Human Resources Office. If you have any questions, please call Rich Wallace at 406-827-6947.