The Moore County Health Department and its governing body, The Moore County Board of Health, was organized in 1928. It was located in the present Historic Courthouse with a staff of three, a health director, a nurse and a clerk. The first health director was John M. Symington, M.D. He remained as health director until 1941.
In 1941, Benjamin M. Drake, M.D. became health director. He increased the health department space from two rooms to the entire third floor of the courthouse and established satellite clinics in Cameron and Robbins.
Jessie Willcox, M.D. became health director in 1943 and remained in that position until 1965. In 1951, the Health Department moved into a new health center at the corner of Ray and Saunders streets in Carthage.
The department continued to grow under the leadership of Alfred G. Siege, M.D. as health director from 1966 to 1985.
Robert R. Wittmann, M.P.H. became health director in 1985. In 1989 the department moved into its present facilities located at 705 Pinehurst Avenue in Carthage. The health department currently employs a staff of roughly 50 professionals representing a wide variety of health related disciplines. Programs and services include community health assessment, health promotion, communicable disease, epidemiology, personal health/clinical services, and environmental health.
Today the department is involved in a wide range of collaborative community health activities designed to protect and promote health through prevention and control of disease and injury.
Learn more about the history of public health in North Carolina on the Association of North Carolina Board of Health website.
Learn more about public health from the American Public Health Association website.