Directors of Public Health Nursing in county and city health departments in California have been meeting together since 1952. Initially, these meetings were in the form of annual workshops, financed by the State Health Department, and jointly planned by the Bureau of Public Health Nursing at the state level, and the local Directors of Public Health Nursing. The workshops were concerned with issues about nursing administration as it relates to public health.
In 1962, the California Conference of Local Health Officers (CCLHO) passed a resolution supporting the organization of various local health department administrative personnel into statewide affiliates, and the existing nursing directors group proposed a structure that is today the Directors of Public Health Nursing (DPHN). With the elimination of the State Bureau of Public Health Nursing in the early 1970′s, DPHN established membership dues and sought financing through other mechanisms to continue the annual workshop format. DPHN’s membership includes Directors of Public Health Nursing in local official health agencies in California who, for purposes of carving out the business of DPHN, are divided into four regions: Bay, Central, North, and South.