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jerryking : public_health   12

The Sewers of Paris and the Making of the Modern City | CBC Radio
Philip Coulter goes underground in the City of Light to visit the City of Smell. Part 1 of 2-part series.
CBC Radio · January 25
19th_century  CBC_Radio  cities  disease  herd_immunity  history  pandemics  Paris  plague  public_goods  public_health  sewage 
january 2019 by jerryking
Ebola isn’t the big threat. That’s still to come - The Globe and Mail
ANDRÉ PICARD
The Globe and Mail
Published Tuesday, Dec. 30 2014

What has helped rein in Ebola is good, old-fashioned infection-control measures pioneered by the likes of Florence Nightingale and James Lister, and gumshoe epidemiological work à la John Snow.

All these approaches date back to the 19th century, but they remain the backbone of tackling outbreaks of infectious disease, especially those like Ebola that spread principally in the health-care setting.

Just as importantly, all these tactics are local and hands-on, with Ebola reminding us that: 1) good public health must be community-based; 2) public-health measures are only effective if there is buy-in from health-care practitioners and the public alike and; 3) for that to occur, good communication is paramount....Ebola is a problem that is solvable. This outbreak actually can be snuffed out. It would be irresponsible to fail to do so and to allow Ebola to gain a more permanent foothold. The difficulties faced in controlling what should be – at least on paper – a relatively easy-to-control outbreak is humbling. It’s also a grim reminder that we’re still not ready for a pandemic that actually is a global threat.

Much work remains to be done in preparedness, education and, above all, in recognizing that in our interconnected world, there is no such thing as a distant threat any more.
threats  public_health  Ebola  flu_outbreaks  André_Picard  interconnections  pathogens  pandemics  19th_century  community-based 
december 2014 by jerryking
You can’t stop Ebola at airports - The Globe and Mail
ANDRÉ PICARD
The Globe and Mail
Published Tuesday, Oct. 07 2014

Ebola is spread by direct contact with a sick person’s bodily fluids – meaning saliva, feces, urine, blood, vomit or semen....For the past 600 years, quarantine has been used with varying degrees of success, and it has an unhappy history. It raises myriad political, ethical and socioeconomic issues.

Quarantine derives from the Italian word quaranta (forty); its origins date back to 1348, when Venice ruled that ships must lay anchor for 40 days to avoid spread of the plague. (Forty days was arbitrary; it was inspired by the biblical 40 days of travails of Jesus.) Draconian measures didn’t stop the Black Plague, or smallpox, or tuberculosis or SARS or successive waves of pandemic influenza, and it won’t stop Ebola. Quarantine has some public health benefits, but it has been used, throughout history, to repress and stigmatize minorities, and to quash political dissent.

What works most effectively for quelling outbreaks of disease like Ebola is not quarantining huge populations, but isolating those who are sick and those in direct contact with them and at risk of infection....The lesson there is that disease containment requires swift, decisive action. It means focusing on the sick and those at high-risk.

Casting a too wide net, such as invoking travel bans and treating everyone who has travelled to or lives in West Africa as a modern-day Typhoid Mary, does not make us safer.

On the contrary, it only provides an illusion of security, and an excuse for prejudice to come bubbling to the surface.
Ebola  airports  Africa  public_health  travel  quarantines  André_Picard  dangers  false_confidence  viruses  illusions  embargoes  biblical  arbitrariness 
october 2014 by jerryking
Bloomberg Focuses on Rest (as in Rest of the World) - NYTimes.com
December 14, 2013 | NYT | By MICHAEL BARBARO.

Bloomberg Associates will be a project that is the first concrete phase of a post-mayoral life that aides said would remain intensely focused on cities, long viewed by him as laboratories for large-scale experiments in public health, economic development and environmental sustainability.

Above all, the new endeavor reflects a profound confidence — never in short supply with this mayor — that it would behoove dozens of municipalities to replicate the ideas that defined his tenure: turning busy roads into pedestrian plazas, posting calorie counts in fast-food chains, creating a customer-service hotline for citizens....The consulting group is the latest chapter in Mr. Bloomberg’s long journey from political neophyte to much-admired mentor to fellow mayors, dozens of whom have flocked to City Hall to study his open-seat bullpen layout, attended his conferences about urban innovation and applied for grants from his foundation (called “mayors’ school” by several city leaders who have spent time there).
Michael_Bloomberg  New_York_City  Second_Acts  management_consulting  hotlines  data  data_driven  cities  mayoral  large-scale  public_health  economic_development  sustainability  environment 
december 2013 by jerryking
U of T Launches School of Public Health
Summer 2008 | University of Toronto Magazine | By Christa Poole.
$20-million gift from Paul Dalla Lana creates new medical hub
uToronto  entrepreneur  real_estate  endowments  angels  moguls  public_health  philanthropy 
march 2013 by jerryking
With a Long List but Short on Money, F.D.A. Tackles Food Safety - NYTimes.com
By WILLIAM NEUMAN
August 22, 2011

A landmark food safety law passed by Congress last December is supposed
to reduce the frequency and severity of food safety problems, but the
roll call of recent cases underlines the magnitude of the task....The
agency is taking on the expanded mission at a time when Washington
budget-slashing means that regulators have little hope of getting
additional money and may instead have their budgets cut by Congress....A
budget freeze or cuts would have the greatest impact on the ambitious
increase in inspections called for under the new law, which ramp up each
year.

“Writing rules is inexpensive (jk: i.e. policymaking is easy); enforcing them is expensive (jk i.e. implementation is hard), said David W. Acheson, a former associate commissioner of the F.D.A. who is now a
food safety consultant. “There will be a public health impact because
enforcement won’t be to the extent they want to do it.”
product_recalls  implementation  food_safety  hard_work  FDA  cost-cutting  policymaking  public_health  enforcement  regulation  pairs  frequency_and_severity  regulators  cutbacks  quotes  rule-writing  budget_cuts 
august 2011 by jerryking
Canada stockpiles ventilators for flu fight
Jul. 07, 2009 | The Globe & Mail | Gloria Galloway. As
the H1N1 pandemic spreads globally, Canadian public health findings show
– for unknown reasons – that victims here have been younger and sicker,
and have required more ventilators than most other countries, including
the United States.
ventilators  flu_outbreaks  healthcare  Canadian_Healthcare_System  pandemics  H1N1  public_health  stockpiles 
july 2009 by jerryking
FT.com / Columnists / Michael Skapinker - Bottled water and the madness of crowds
September 24 2007 19:06 | Last updated: September 24 2007
19:06, FT, by Michael Skapinker
References, "Wellsprings: a Natural History of Bottled Spring Waters" by
the American hydrologist, Francis Chapelle, who says that the
chlorination of public drinking water “has probably saved more human
lives than any other technological advance in public health history”.
water  water_footprints  public_health  books 
march 2009 by jerryking

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