public health

Dear Research Advocate, Happy Thanksgiving Week! Every Monday before Thanksgiving Research!America hosts Public Health Thank You Day (PHYTD), thanking the individuals across the nation who serve the public health. With participation by so many of you, we garnered 27 million impressions on Twitter with nearly 500 unique tweets by public health organizations and leaders. Federal officials taking part included Secretary of HHS Alex Azar; Surgeon General Dr. Jerome Adams; CDC Director Robert Redfield; NIH Director Francis Collins; NIAID Director Anthony Fauci; Assistant Secretary of Health and Acting FDA Commissioner Brett Giroir; VHA Deputy Undersecretary for Health Carolyn Clancy and many...
As we prepare to gather with family and friends around tables big and small, it’s time to ask the age old question: What are you thankful for this year? Many of us will mention we are thankful for our health, but chances are that few will express thanks for the scientific research and public health vigilance that play a pivotal role in health and health care. In 1918, a major flu pandemic took the lives of 675,000 Americans and 50 million people across the globe. Today, vaccination and medicines that reduce the effects of the flu have dramatically reduced its impact. Looking ahead, researchers are making progress toward a “universal” flu vaccine that crosses all strains of flu and provides...
When Donne first shared the notion that no person is an island he could scarcely have imagined the intricate web that is global public health today. When we envision our futures, it is impossible not to see all of the people that engage and collaborate at the local, national, and global level. Today, public health is reliant upon rich, interconnected network of organizations—working to understand and address the interrelated needs of communities and populations and to serve humanity at every level. As Dean of the health college at one of the fastest growing and most diverse universities in the country, the strength we draw from cooperation and community-building is top of mind on Public...
Dear Research Advocate, On the Monday before Thanksgiving each year, Research!America, along with public health leaders across the nation take time to salute the people who work day-in and day-out to protect us from disease, injury, and other threats to our nation’s health. Members of this critical workforce can be found in every community across the country. They track infectious diseases and administer the vaccines to prevent their spread. They warn us about overuse of antibiotics leading to drug-resistant infections. They educate us about preventing accidental deaths by using infant car seats and about newer but avoidable dangers like vaping. And more. The public health workforce...
Infectious disease outbreaks. Opioid overdoses. Chemical exposures. When threats like these arise, we rely on public health surveillance efforts to identify and address them. However, our current systems are outdated and disjointed, hindering the ability of public health professionals to respond to such crises in a timely manner. On June 27, 2019, the Association of Public Health Laboratories (APHL), the Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists (CSTE), the Healthcare Information Management Systems Society (HIMSS), and the National Association for Public Health Statistics and Information Systems (NAPHSIS) held a Capitol Hill briefing focused on the critical need to update America’s...
“The richest Americans live an average of 15 years longer than the poorest Americans,” said Martine Powers of the Washington Post as she kicked off a Washington Post Live forum on “The Future of Health” on June 4, 2019. The panel discussion focused on correlations between income and health featuring Dr. Georges Benjamin , president of the American Public Health Association and Research!America board member, and Dr. Shiriki Kumanyika of Drexel University . “We have to go upstream and look at how we got here,” to understand the implications of social factors and health disparities, Dr. Kumanyika explained. For example, regarding the homeless population, she suggested, “Why do we have policies...
Dear Research Advocate: Last week, the White House laid out its plan for all Cabinet departments to trim their proposed FY20 budgets by 5%. If, as anticipated, these cuts begin with the FY20 spending caps signed into law in 2011 (so-called ‘sequestration’), rather than actual FY19 budgets, the proposed cuts could be shockingly deep—in the 25% range. The potential impact on the NIH budget alone could be a cut of $9.77B, wiping out the increases of the last few years to the point of returning to 2013 funding levels and, when adjusting for inflation, 2001 spending power. Other agencies could take equivalent hits, compromising progress in achieving health goals and sending a clear message to...
Dear Research Advocate: News broke this week that the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) is struggling with a still-rising death toll due to Ebola, claiming more than 139 lives since July and spreading beyond the DRC. Meanwhile in the U.S., public health experts are working day and night to understand and overcome acute flaccid myelitis (AFM), now affecting children in 22 or more states. Ebola and AFM are public health crises today. It is predictable that there will be more unexpected crises on top of ongoing threats like the opioid epidemic, the increasing prevalence of obesity, chronic diseases and more. Which is why it defies common sense that investment in global health and in our...
Dear Research Advocate: This morning, the Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee held a hearing with Dr. Kelvin Droegemeier, the nominee for director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP). Committee Chairman John Thune (R-SD) said Dr. Droegemeier is eminently well qualified to lead OSTP and he hopes for a speedy confirmation. Use this editable email to reinforce that sentiment with your Senators! You can read Dr. Droegemeier’s testimony for the hearing here . Also in the Senate today, the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee held a hearing on "Prioritizing Cures: Science and Stewardship at the National Institutes of Health...
Dear Research Advocate: President Trump signed the John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2019 (NDAA), authorizing $716 billion in spending for the Department of Defense (DoD). R&D features prominently, including the Congressionally Directed Medical Research Program ( CDMRP ), the WRAIR Labs, and other medical and public health research pivotal to domestic and global health security. A particularly compelling example of the value of defense research is the recent story of the youngest person to receive a face transplant in U.S. history, part of a research study DoD funded because of its critical applications for wounded warriors. Read more in this USA Today...

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