public health

By Peter Hotez, M.D., Ph.D. Dr. Hotez is the President of the Sabin Vaccine Institute, Director of the Sabin Vaccine Institute and Texas Children's Hospital Center for Vaccine Development , and founding Dean of the National School of Tropical Medicine at Baylor College of Medicine . He is also Baker Institute Fellow in Disease and Poverty at Rice University, and University Professor at Baylor University, all located in the state of Texas. In honor of Public Health Thank You Day, Dr. Hotez sits down to talk about his work on neglected tropical diseases and their importance in global public health initiatives: The neglected tropical diseases or€“ the œNTDs€ are a group of tropical infections...
Please join Research!America and leading U.S. public health organizations on Monday, Nov. 24, to celebrate Public Health Thank You Day, a chance to recognize public health professionals who work round-the-clock to protect the health of all Americans. In order to facilitate your participation in Public Health Thank You Day, we have provided an online toolkit on the Public Health Thank You Day site . We encourage you to use these materials to issue your own press release, submit a letter to the editor, offer a certificate of thanks, share social media posts (#PHTYD) and more. This year, in addition to thanking all public health heroes, we are highlighting the special roles of health...
Dear Research Advocate: In recognition of his many accomplishments as a champion for research, Research!America Chair and former Congressman John Edward Porter was honored by the National Academy of Sciences with the Public Welfare Medal, the Academy’€™s most prestigious award. This well-deserved acknowledgment of Porter’€™s tireless efforts to advance innovation and engage scientists in advocacy should motivate advocates to follow his lead and speak up about threats to our nation’€™s research ecosystem. Read our statement on the award ceremony here . In his remarks , Mr. Porter noted that ’€œpolitical judgment should never be allowed to be substituted for scientific judgment.’€ This point...
Public health is the backbone of our society. Without the contributions of public health initiatives, what new disease epidemic might we face and how many lives would be lost? Successful public health programs depend on research, an often underappreciated facet of the system. By taking a critical look at the data and bringing the right programs to the right communities at the right time, research can target and increase the effectiveness of public health interventions. This year, celebrate National Public Health Week by talking to your candidates for Congress. Start a dialogue ’€“ tell them why research for medical progress and public health is important to you, and ask them where they...
Dear Research Advocate: Research!America, in partnership with the American Society of Hematology, released a new poll on Tuesday, revealing strong feelings about the consequences of recent fiscal debacles. A majority (57%) of Americans, across party lines, believe that the government shutdown in October caused significant harm to programs like medical research, defense and education, programs that Americans value. It is not difficult to connect the dots between fiscal dysfunction and the future of our nation: More Americans than ever believe that our nation’€™s global leadership in science, technology and research will soon be a thing of the past,with 73% saying we will lose global...
To address the recent meningitis outbreak at Princeton, public health programs from all levels got involved. Students sought medical attention at the university’€™s health center and their hometown local hospitals; the New Jersey Department of Health (NJDOH) investigated the outbreak and requested CDC involvement; the FDA examined the case and allowed a new vaccine, unlicensed in the US but approved in Europe and Australia. With final CDC approval, the university will offer the vaccine on campus and cover the cost for all students. Diverse institutions within our public health infrastructure came together to address the outbreak, and the public health professionals within them did what was...
Excerpt of an article published in The Boston Globe on the next surgeon general. President Obama will nominate Dr. Vivek Murthy of Harvard Medical School and Brigham and Women’€™s Hospital as surgeon general of the United States, the White House announced Thursday night. ’€œWe share a belief that access to quality health care is a basic human right,’€ Brigham president Dr. Betsy Nabel said in a statement about Murthy. ’€œI am confident that he will be a passionate advocate and that he will have an extraordinary impact as our nation’€™s surgeon general.’€ Read the full article here .
Dear Research Advocate: NIH Director Francis Collins was recently interviewed for a Wall Street Journal article that would reinvigorate even the weariest research advocate. Dr. Collins captured the legacy and unprecedented potential of research for health, as well as the counterintuitive neglect of it, in a truly compelling manner. Dr. Collins made similarly captivating comments yesterday at the Washington Ideas Forum: “We’€™re going from the envy of the world,” he said, “to the puzzle of the world. Other nations are mystified that we have stopped following our own playbook ’€” the one they are using now to drive their economy and improve health and quality of life for their own populations...
Dear Research Advocate: It has been a week since the Budget Conference Committee’€™s first meeting. The next public meeting is scheduled for November 13. Staffs are at work, and various Members are talking. There are no concrete signs of progress. What I keep coming back to is the failure of our nation’€™s decision makers to recognize and act on the reality that the priorities of Americans are reflected in both discretionary and entitlement programs. The persistence of sequestration underscores Congress’€™ inability to make decisions and choose priorities. The sequestration era has run its course, dealing Congress record lows in terms of public support; it’€™s past time to end the era and...
Urge your Members to protect medical research in upcoming Budget Conference Committee discussions Sequestration’€™s arbitrary, across-the-board budget cuts to defense and non-defense spending have ravaged (and will continue to ravage) our research enterprise. The Budget Conference Committee, which was negotiated as part of reopening the government and preventing the U.S. from defaulting on debts, has an opportunity to replace sequestration as they develop their ’€œlong-term budget solution’€ by December 13. Sequestration is rendering it virtually impossible to maintain, much less increase the budgets of NIH, NSF, FDA, and CDC; if it is not stopped, their budgets will almost certainly...

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Funding research gives all of us a better chance of living a healthier life.
Pam Hirata, heart disease survivor