FAIRFIELD, CONNECTICUT – With COVID-19 still an ever-present threat and monkeypox cases rising alongside existing chronic epidemics, building strong, responsive public health systems has never been more important. In addition to improving data management (mentioned in a previous commentary), the world also needs sustained investment and training in the public health workforce.
Public health has always suffered from chronic underfunding, partly because the social and economic benefits of investing in preventive care are difficult to quantify or invisible to the untrained eye. Successes in containing outbreaks of disease or reducing mortality rates often go unnoticed. Unfortunately, it often takes a massive failure of prevention to get policymakers and the public to recognize the need for greater preparedness.
Americans spend significantly more on medical costs than do people in other similarly wealthy countries, yet still have lower life expectancies, higher rates of chronic disease and maternal mortality, andThe content herein is subject to copyright by Project Syndicate. All rights reserved. The content of the services is owned or licensed to The Yuan. The copying or storing of any content for anything other than personal use is expressly prohibited without prior written permission from The Yuan, or the copyright holder identified in the copyright notice contained in the content.