Dr. Umair Shah, Washington State Secretary of Health, explains the One Health concept at the annual Preparedness Summit in Atlanta; Dr. Dylan George, Director of the CDC's Center for Forecasting and Outbreak Analytics, says building strong data...
Dr. Umair Shah, Washington State Secretary of Health, explains the One Health concept at the annual Preparedness Summit in Atlanta; Dr. Dylan George, Director of the CDC's Center for Forecasting and Outbreak Analytics, says building strong data connections can improve response to disease outbreaks; an ASTHO webinar addresses the relationship between mental health and breastfeeding; and ASTHO’s Health Equity Summit is happening now in Atlanta.
Public Health TechXpo and Futures Forum
Health Equity Summit: A Movement for Justice
This is Public Health Review Morning Edition for Tuesday, April 25, 2023. I'm Robert Johnson.
Now, today's news from the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials.
The theory of what health is that we are all interconnected.
Public health is impacted by the connections between humans, plants, and animals. This is Washington State Health Secretary, Dr. Umair Shah.
What happens across the system—whether it's with insects, whether it's with animals, whether it's with the environment, whether it's our human health, whether it's our human behaviors, whether it's climate change—all of that comes in to connect and intersect and impact the health for all of us.
Shah moderated a panel about the One Health approach this week in Atlanta. That's where public health leaders are meeting to discuss emergency preparedness. He says it's critical that all disciplines come together to manage the changing public health landscape.
When you take a pragmatic approach, what you're really doing is you're saying, we're going to take the experts who are practitioners in, let's say, epidemiology or human health; we're going to bring the entomologists, the folks who study insects or respond to mosquito or tick-borne diseases; we're going to bring the veterinarians into the mix; we're going to bring the environmental and the sanitarians and all the environmentalists in the in the public health sphere—I'm going to bring them together in what I call a multidisciplinary team approach. And we then look at both the problems and the solutions that are related to health, and we then take those on.
Public health, according to Shah, can help make those connections to improve community health outcomes.
We want to work on steps that really allow us to learn from each other but also learn from those disparate and different fields of discipline while we have designed the approaches so that we are able to take on the challenges that are happening within our communities.
The annual preparedness summit continues through Thursday. You can learn more about the agenda for the meeting using the link in the show notes.
Public health is working to improve data connections that can speed the response to disease outbreaks. Dr. Dylan George is director of the CDC Center for Forecasting and Outbreak Analytics.
We have really struggled with some parts of public health data acquisition and the use of this data hampers our ability to understand what's happening in our communities in terms of health risks.
Delays in sharing data can be catastrophic, but George tells us there is hope in systems that provide real time data to the people who need it.
Early effective response means that fewer people will be impacted and the economy can recover more quickly. The Center for Forecasting and Outbreaks Analytics' capability that we're building is to share forecasts of disease risk and the trajectory of an outbreak with decision makers and provide that early warning capability to the government so we can move much more effectively and counter these infectious disease outbreaks and for pandemics.
Even though we live in an era of epidemics that threaten our health and our national security, George believes data can help us improve our response.
Data technologies have transformed our society, but they have not transformed our public health infrastructure. The capabilities we're building to do disease forecasting hold great promise for improving response capabilities, and we need to work very effectively at doing. And the time is now for that change. We have the resources, the vision, the support from leaders, and we're building the partnerships and teams. We can meet this moment together and improve our outbreak response for the whole nation.
Very soon, the CDC will announce a funding opportunity worth about $250 million. According to George, the goal will be to encourage innovation focused on data sharing and advanced analytics.
Through this announcement, we will engage partners to develop a network of innovators that will design prototypes and test and scale up analytics. It's going to be really exciting to see this be put in action and we're going to award recipients that will work with us in the Center for Forecasting Outbreak Analytics to advancing different modeling approaches, different forecasting approaches, different ways of collecting data in a public health emergency.
You can learn more about technology opportunities and solutions at ASTHO's TechXpo and Futures Forum set for next month. Online tickets are still available. Sign up using the link in the show notes.
Also today, breastfeeding can help protect a new parent from perinatal mood disorders. ASTHO has scheduled a webinar to explain how the two are related. The event is Monday, May 1 at 3:30 p.m. Eastern time. You can sign up using the link in the show notes.
Finally this morning, ASTHO's Health Equity Summit is underway in Atlanta. This year's theme is a movement for justice. As you know, we've been reporting on the summit here on the newscast. We'll let you know how it goes.
That'll do it for today's newscast. We're back tomorrow morning with more ASTHO news and information.
I'm Robert Johnson. You're listening to Public Health Review Morning Edition. Have a great day.
Director of Operations, Center for Epidemic Forecasting and Outbreak Analytics, CDC