Public Safety vs. Public Health Career Path


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Public Safety vs. Public Health Career Path

The commonality of professionals who work in public safety and health is that they have many things in their common. They dedicate their lives to protecting the public from natural and man-made disasters. Their careers are dedicated to protecting others. Public safety and public health are sometimes discussed together. However, because they have a reciprocal relationship, they are separate entities. Public safety and health are distinct fields with different goals, and should not be confused by those who wish to contribute to the greater good.

Below we explain the differences between public health and public safety as well as how these career paths intersect.

What is Public Health and how can it be improved?

Public health refers to the science of improving and protecting the health of people, communities, or populations. Public health’s main purpose is to improve health and extend the lives of people. This involves taking steps to prevent disease and disability and increase access to health care. It also involves educating others about health topics and creating strategies to improve people’s quality-of-life.

What is Public Safety?

Public safety is the protection and security of people and their communities from dangers such as crime and natural disasters. It usually refers to the function of government agencies, which are specially designed to protect citizens and the general public from potential danger.

Public Safety Careers vs. Public Health

Public health careers focus on the well-being and health of individuals. Public safety careers aim to ensure the safety and security our citizens. You can see that there are a lot of similarities between the two. Both public safety and public health have the same mission, which is to promote the greater good. The difference between each career is how they achieve this mission is what makes them unique.

Health and healthcare are the main focus of public health professionals. They might work in health agencies, medical facilities, research facilities, or laboratories to monitor, prevent, and respond for disease outbreaks. But they also care about the overall health of the population and not just the provision of healthcare. You will also find public health professionals working on preventing gun violence in America. They may also be involved in campaigns to combat climate change, water contamination, mental illness, and substance abuse. Public health careers focus on facilitating change wherever it is needed in order to make the world a safer and more stable place to live, work, play, and study.

Public health careers are:

Health Educator

  • Community health worker
  • Health Promotion Specialist
  • Public Health Services Manager


  • Health Inspector or Sanitarian
  • Child Development Specialist
  • Child Welfare Specialist
  • Health Education Coordinator
  • Patient Advocate


  • Disaster and Emergency Specialist
  • Public Health Analyst/Researcher
  • Director for Public Health


The public safety professional’s main focus is security. Public safety officers are responsible in preventing crime and protecting communities from external threats. This could mean protecting the country’s borders from drug trafficking or protecting a company’s networks against cyber-attacks. This may include sentencing and rehabilitation of criminals. Public safety professionals are trained to respond to emergency situations and threats within communities. This includes responding to natural disasters, violence, intrusions and other violent incidents. Public safety professionals have a common goal: to ensure that people live in safety and security.

There are many examples of public safety careers that can be found in today’s society, including but not limited to

  • Policing Officer
  • Security Guard
  • Parole Officer
  • Corrections Officer
  • First Responder
  • Emergency Dispatcher
  • Computer Security Specialist
  • Customs and Border Protection Agency
  • DEA Agent
  • FBI Agent
  • Fire Science Investigator
  • Transportation Security Agent
  • Cyber Crime Investigator
  • Detective
  • Paragraph

Public Health vs. Public Safety Degree Paths

Both the public safety and Public Safety fields are great choices for you if you want to have an impact on the world and the lives of others. Perhaps you are wondering how one can get a job as a public health or safety professional.

In the end, each job title will determine what career requirements are for public health or public safety professionals. However, most people will start with a bachelor’s program.

A bachelor’s in Public Health will prepare you for a successful career by providing the knowledge and skills you need to be successful. You will learn about health promotion, health promotion, epidemiology and occupational health. There will also be topics in public safety. This level of coursework can prepare you for a career in health education and health promotion. This course will also help you prepare for graduate studies if you choose to pursue a Master’s in Public health.

A bachelor’s in Public Safety will allow you to be a leader in a highly competitive field. A bachelor’s degree can be a prerequisite for many positions in law enforcement, but it is not necessary. Goodwin University offers a bachelor’s program that covers all aspects related to criminal justice and public safety. This includes criminology, corrections and public policy analysis, risk reduction and investigative reporting.

Your interests will ultimately determine which public safety option is best for you. Are you keen to help promote good healthcare and healthy communities? Do you want to protect your community and keep them safe? Are you interested in helping to prevent or respond to diseases outbreaks and other public emergencies?

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