Office of Public Health Nursing


Our Focus

Public health nursing began in the mid-1800s in England when Florence Nightingale trained nurses in the district nursing concept. Nurses were assigned and responsible for the health of the people in specific London neighborhoods. These nurses helped improve patient health by providing community channels and information on topics like sanitation and education.

This model of nursing popped up in the U.S. in New York City in 1877. Around this time, Lillian Wald — who coined the phrase “public health nurse” — emerged as a leader in the field. She realized that sickness found in the home originated as societal problems and directed nursing efforts toward employment, sanitation, and education.

Ward served as the first president of the National Organization of Public Health Nurses, formed in 1912. In 1913, the first public health nurse for the U.S. Public Health Service was appointed.We at County of Bergen Department of Health Services (CBDHS) are inspired by Lillian Wald’s, teachings; and attempt to follow the concepts of Lillian Wald. 

We recognize that medical cures alone, although important, will not reduce the epidemic of diseases of despair or the growing challenges involved in achieving health equity in our community. Wald's approach, extended to a broader range of settings in which nurses work today, could be the missing ingredient. It is our hope that we at CBDHS, Office of Public Health Nursing, will strive to be that missing ingredient extending ourselves to our community and bring improved health equity.


“Reform can be accomplished only when attitudes are changed!”

 -Lillian Wald 

What We Do

Public Health Nurses Provide:


Inter-local Services

  • Senior Citizens Clinics
  • Childhood Immunization Audits and Guidance
  • Non-Public School Oversight

Contact Us

Noemi Dominguez, RN, MSN

Director of Public Health Nursing


 Bergen County Department of Health Services

One Bergen County Plaza  • 4th Floor • Hackensack, NJ 07601-7076

Phone: 201-634-2600 • Fax: 201-336-6086