Public Health

The Nevada State Medical Association supports a strong and effective, evidence based, statewide public health system, advocates for the expansion of programs which improve the health of Nevadans, and advises policy creators and regulators on public health.  The NSMA Policy Compendium highlights the association’s stance on a number of public health issues.



POLST is a program that focuses on providing  those with serious illness or frailty specific options for end-of-life treatments.  POLST forms must be signed by a physician one of the following: A patient, 18 years or older and of sound mind; A representative of a patient 18 years of age or older who is incompetent, as designated on the patient’s DPOA-HC; or the parent or legal guardian of a patient under 18 years of age.

Nevada POLST.

Physicians can order POLST forms here.


Tobacco Use

Tobacco use is a major Public Health burden in the United States and, like a number of other public health issues, disproportionately affects Nevadans..  As of a 2012 report published by the Nevada Department of Health and Human Services, Nevada has the 9th highest smoking rate in the nation.  21.3% of Nevadans currently smoke, and with the growing use of alternate tobacco products like E-cigarettes, tobacco use is a public health problem which the NSMA is actively working to improve.


The Nevada Tobacco Prevention Coalition


Nevada Tobacco Quitline

Nevada Department of Health and Human Services

Get Healthy Clark County

Washoe County Health District

Nevada Wellness

Surgeon General’s Reports on Smoking

CDC Infographic on Tobacco Use



Immunizations are an invaluable tool for fighting disease and infection.  Unfortunately almost 35 percent of Nevada’s children, age 19 to 35 months, did not receive all of their immunizations in 2012. (Healthy Americans)  Seasonal flus are another major public health problem which can be combated through the use of immunizations.  Currently Nevada ranks among one of the worst states for vaccination rates for those who are 65 years and older (Healthy Americans) but, through partnerships with local orginizations, improvements can easily be made.


Immunize Nevada


-Information on vaccines required for School – National Vaccine Information Center

– Information on Recommended Vaccines  – Nevada Public Health Foundation

– Immunization Clinics in Southern Nevada – Southern Nevada Health District

– Immunization Clinics in Washoe County – Washoe County

Division of Public and Behavioral Health


Teen Pregnancy

In 2008 Nevada had the second highest rate of teen pregnancy in the nation.  In 2005, some zip codes in Clark County ranked among countries like Nigeria, Zambia, and Sierra Leone for highest teen birth rates.  (SNHD)


Teen Health Resources

Office of Adolescent Health



Mental Health

A number of groups meet to discuss Mental Health treatment in Nevada and the Nevada State Medical Association is regularly involved.


Where to Find Help in Northern Nevada

Where to Find Help in Southern Nevada

Division of Public and Behavioral Health

Northern Nevada Adult Mental Health Services

Southern Nevada Adult Mental Health Services

Governor’s Behavioral Health and Wellness Council


Safe Injection

Injected medicines are commonly used in healthcare settings for the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of various illnesses but unsafe injection practices put patients and healthcare providers at risk of infectious and non-infectious adverse events and have been associated with a wide variety of procedures and settings.  Safe injection practices can easily prevent this harm.


One and Only Campaign

Nevada Nursing Board

Centers for Disease Control


Illicit Drug Use/ Alcohol Use

In 2009, Nevada’s youths accounted for 3.6% of the total primary heroin admissions in the Silver State, the nationwide rate was .5%.  While national rates of illicit drug use among the youth fell significantly between 2003 and 2009, Nevada’s rates grew slightly.  (UNLV)


Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment Agency

Drunk Driving Statistics

State Board of Examiners

Health and Human Services


Domestic Violence

Nevada Network Against Domestic Violence


Ebola Resources

Ebola Practice Evidence Classification Chart (October 20, 2014)

Ebola Facts: Clinical Progression of Ebola (October 20, 2014)

Ebola Facts: Revised Guidance on PPE for Healthcare Workers; Recommended Administrative and Environmental Controls for Healthcare Facilities (October 21, 2014)



The rate of diabetes among adults in Nevada has increased nearly every year since 2006, and, as of 2014, is estimated to affect nearly 9% of Nevada adults. Furthermore, the share of all Type 2 diabetes patients across Nevada who were between the ages of 18 and 64 rose slightly from 2014 to 2015, reaching just over 45%.


Nevada Diabetes and Cardiovascular Disease Report for 2016