Public Health Council

This page is intended for historical purposes only. The Public Health Council is defunct.

Effective December 1, 2010, the Public Health Council (PHC) was consolidated with the State Hospital Review and Planning Council to create the Public Health and Health Planning Council (PHHPC). The PHC was statutorily authorized to consider any matter relating to the preservation and improvement of public health. The Council's powers and duties were set forth in section 225 of the Public Health Law. The Council, in partnership with the State Hospital Review and Planning Council and the Department of Health, was charged with overseeing the Certificate of Need process. It was responsible for reviewing and approving the establishment, and transfers of ownership, of health care facilities and home care agencies. The Council was also responsible for the promulgation of regulations under the NYS Sanitary Code. These regulations encompass communicable diseases, drinking water supplies, qualifications of health personnel, maternal and child health, food service establishments, environmental diseases, and AIDS. Pursuant to 2801-b of the Public Health Law, the Council also considers verified complaints submitted by physicians, podiatrists, optometrists, dentists, and licensed midwives whose hospital privileges were terminated, suspended or denied.

Created in 1913, the Public Health Council was initially charged with adopting the State Sanitary Code. (Laws of New York, Chapter 559 of 1913). In 1970, legislation was enacted to transfer to the Council from the State Board of Social Welfare the responsibility for overseeing the establishment of medical facilities (Laws of New York, Chapter 617 of 1970). Subsequent changes in statute extended the Council's authority to approve the establishment of certified home health agencies, hospices, and licensed home care services agencies.

The Council spearheaded initiatives to improve sanitary conditions and community health. Public health matters such as the polio vaccine, fluoridated water, the closing of tuberculosis hospitals, and hospital-acquired staphylococcus infections were among the varied issues the Council addressed over the years.