In the News
Public health: The (silent) Cure for Ebola
Outreach & Dissemination
I began my career in San Francisco at the Department of Public Health, where I engaged in many activities, including dressing up as a giant condom in our city’s vanguard efforts to conquer an emerging crisis called AIDS. Back then, when I tried to explain to my mother what I did, she was often confused. I wasn’t treating patients, or prescribing medication. How could research, educational literature, or a condom costume make people healthier?
Much like my mother, most of us don’t know what public health is, or pay attention to public health, until we need it. And sometimes, by then, it is too late.
It is because of the day in-day out work of public health that we live relatively healthy lives, and see few major outbreaks. And it is because public health does its job so well that our work is virtually invisible: we don’t see the epidemic quelled because of vaccination campaigns; we don’t witness the salmonella outbreak that was prevented because of food inspection and regulation; we don’t notice the devastating diseases rendered asymptomatic or cured thanks to research that takes years (and funding) to complete.
Originally published by The Hill