Public health: Measures and Initiatives

This week blog posting is dedicated to a passion of mine, Public Health. Those of us in the industry are acutely aware of the remarkable positive effect of the many public health initiatives and measures. Coming from the Caribbean, a region not as technology advanced as the 1st world locales, ( I know) we rely heavily on these initiatives for improvement in life and living

The evolution:

We know that because of these initiatives’ life expectancy (in the US) is now at almost 80 years, double what it was at the end of the 19th – beginning of the 20th century. Many erroneously attribute medical advancements to be the reason for this increase, but investigation has shown that the largest gain in life expectancy occurred between 1880 and 1920 during what is called the First Public Health Revolution (no great scientific or technological advancement then) and was secondary to public health improvements such as control of infectious diseases, more abundant and safer foods, cleaner water, and other nonmedical social improvements.

Even today the efforts of public health methods are called in to play to protect and aid the general population thus improving the quality and quantity of life.

Exactly What is Public Health:

 The American Public Health Association (APHA) tells us that public health promotes and protects the health of people and the communities where they live, learn, work and play.

The central tenant of Public Health is its preventative nature. Prevention is far more effective and far less expensive than cure. The practice promote wellness by encouraging healthy behaviors. It is diverse and takes into account the health of the whole population, rather than focusing on health at an individual level.

The new reality:

The Public’s health is continuously being tested; the most recent threat being the COVID-19 epidemic. The COVID-19 outbreak is deemed a public health emergency and on March 11, 2020 was declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization (WHO). But as is always the case, the public health practice is up to the task with the ultimate goal of improving the quality and quantity of life. The Suggestions from the American Public Health Association (APHA) are:

  • Get vaccinated: and encourage and help others to get vaccinated.
  • Stay informed: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is updating recommendations daily.
  • Be skeptical: You will see false information on social media and across the internet. Consider the source, and acknowledge the complex nature of infectious disease means it’s not easy to sum up the pandemic into a sound bite or short phrase.

Public Health measures/initiatives improve the quantity and quality of life

One Reply to “Public health: Measures and Initiatives”

  1. Hey Andrew, great piece! Although I am not in the health care field myself I am a strong believer in prevention over reaction in medicine. It is a similar case in manufacturing that preventive maintenance on equipment is much more cost-effective than reacting to a problem.


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