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Opinion: Covid-19 has exposed the US' need to invest in public health

October 23, 2020. Summarized by summa-bot.

Susan Blumenthal and Rebekah Gee write that the Covid-19 pandemic provides a historic opportunity to implement a Public Health New Deal that addresses drivers of health and modernizes essential components of America's public health infrastructure to enhance disease surveillance, data collection, testing, health communications and equal access to medical care and preventive services, including vaccines.

In light of the devastation this pandemic has wreaked on our country, it is urgent for the US to invest in public health to better detect and prevent the spread of infectious and chronic diseases, redesign America's health care system for equity as well as effectiveness, and collaborate across multiple sectors of society to meet the basic needs of all Americans.

The guiding principle of a Public Health New Deal is that it must be an all of government approach that is comprehensive and integrated across federal, state and local agencies with an emphasis on prevention and preparedness as well as addressing the many social, economic and environmental factors that contribute to health.

The Covid-19 pandemic provides us with a historic opportunity to implement a Public Health New Deal that addresses these drivers of health and modernizes essential components of America's public health infrastructure to enhance disease surveillance, data collection, testing, health communications and equal access to medical care and preventive services, including vaccines.

A Public Health New Deal must also address the basic needs of all Americans such as economic security, educational opportunity, affordable housing, community safety, healthy food, and access to health care in order to successfully promote health.

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