Category Archives: Uncategorized

Academic turfitis and budgets: public health undergraduate education (by Jonathan Mayer)

In the mid 1990s, I was asked by the Dean of the School of Public Health to develop a Minor and Public Health at the University of Washington, and it became so popular that we decided to extend that into … Continue reading

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Patient outcomes and medical/health geography

Nearly 40 years ago, Ross Mullner and Jack Goldberg published “Toward an outcome-oriented medical geography: an evaluation of the Illinois trauma/emergency medical services system” (Soc Sci Med 1978;12(2D):103-110). The underlying question was whether regionalization and optimal location of services actually … Continue reading

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Wild polio virus has been detected in Israel. Routine environmental/water sampling in southern Israel (Rahat) detected the virus in May. It has now spread to the north. Since the first week of August, the Israeli government has mounted a campaign … Continue reading

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H5N7: A problem in the making?

A new strain of avian influenza, H5N7, has been in the news recently, and every day brings with it reports of more cases and more deaths, principally in China. I am frequently asked: is this something to worry about? It … Continue reading

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Flu season 2012-2013 could be bad

The CDC influenza surveillance system indicates that seasonal flu (H3N2) has gotten off to an earlier start than usual, and the attack rates are higher than usual. Collaborating labs are reporting steadily increasing numbers of isolates. There is only one … Continue reading

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Medical geography: a better name needed

The traditional “medical geography” has been replaced in discussions in the field of geography by “health geography.” Neither describe the field adequately. To me, the importance of medical geography is one of perspective and of methodology: a view of health … Continue reading

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New SARS-like virus identified

I am back again after a long interval during which I had spine surgery. It was my first experience with an operation. I have seen over 500 of them from the OR side for a project on anesthesia and pain, … Continue reading

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Are social determinants of health actually determinants?

There has obviously been a tremendous proliferation of research on what has long been labeled “social determinants of health.” The wording, however, is unfortunate. “Determinants” suggests determinism–a mechanistic set of influences that do not allow for the possible, for the … Continue reading

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Public Health: Responsibility to whom?

In clinical medicine, responsibility is to the individual patient. I have often thought that in public health, our responsibility is to the population–to the group, the collective, the strange amalgam of “society.” As somebody put it, “the responsibility of physicians … Continue reading

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Contagion as a teaching tool

I am planning on showing “Contagion” today in my undergraduate disease ecology class. As my previous blog entry indicated, i think that the concepts that are illustrated in this excellent film include: disease spread and its elementary math; routes of … Continue reading

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