Public Health Medicine

Public health medicine is about improving and protecting the health of the population as a whole. Public health physicians have specialist knowledge of health protection, health service development and health improvement.


Public health medicine reaches beyond the usual boundaries of the healthcare system. Doctors in this specialty work in national government agencies, local community and voluntary organisations.

Public health physicians work to:

  • protect the population from health threats such as communicable diseases and environmental hazards
  • reduce health inequalities
  • support healthier lifestyles
  • protect and improve healthcare services for local populations

Higher Specialist Training (HST)


  • a certificate of completion of Basic Specialist Training in General Internal Medicine or Paediatrics or Obstetrics and Gynaecology or Histopathology
  • or evidence of completion of an equivalent two-year training programme approved by a postgraduate training body
  • or completed at least two years of general practice training with the Irish College of General Practitioners
  • or specialist registration on the General Practice Register with the Medical Council of Ireland
  • or evidence of exceptional academic achievements or professional public health experience.