MERRIMAC — The town’s public health nurse, Charlotte Eileen Stepanian, was inducted as a Fellow of the Local Public Health Institute of MA (LPHI) on April 30 at Tower Hill Botanical Garden, Boylston.
Fellows, who are selected from health departments across Massachusetts, are honored for their demonstrated mastery of public health practice, commitment to their own professional development, and willingness and ability to share their expertise with the next generation of public health practitioners across the state and the country.
On a daily basis, Stepanian demonstrates superior abilities in public health on behalf of the citizens of Merrimac. As part of the Older Americans Act and Senior Meal Sites, Stepanian established the weekly blood pressure and health clinics that are still held today at both the Senior Center and Elderly Housing, according to a press release from the LPHI.
She also began a Used Sharps Collection Program for Merrimac long before it was mandated to ensure safety for the public and trash handlers. Merrimac residents have long kept abreast with current health information found in the monthly Senior Center newsletter column entitled, “Thought You’d Like To Know.”
Recently, Stepanian was honored by the Public Health Nursing Section of the American Public Health Association with the Lillian Wald Service Award at their 140th Annual Meeting in San Francisco.
In addition to being an actively practicing public health nurse, Stepanian has spent the past eight years as adjunct faculty at both undergraduate and graduate level collegiate programs teaching both community health and population-focused care in addition to being an excellent teacher and mentor to other public health practitioners throughout Massachusetts.
The mission of the Institute is to provide and ensure a competent workforce by strengthening and sustaining the capacity of local boards of health to prepare for and respond to public health issues and emergencies and to promote the health of residents of the commonwealth.