2023 Public health stories #8

Curated public health stories for this week from my reading shelf for Week 8 of 2023.


Assessing the impact of one million COVID-19 deaths in America: economic and life expectancy losses” from Nature

Between February 2020 and May 2022, one million Americans have died of COVID-19. To determine the contribution of those deaths to all-cause mortality in terms of life expectancy reductions and the resulting economic welfare losses, we calculated their combined impact on national income growth and the added value of lives lost. We estimated that US life expectancy at birth dropped by 3.08 years due to the million COVID-19 deaths. Economic welfare losses estimated in terms of national income growth supplemented by the value of lives lost, was in the order of US$3.57 trillion. US$2.20 trillion of these losses were in in the non-Hispanic White population (56.50%), US$698.24 billion (19.54%) in the Hispanic population, and US$579.93 billion (16.23%) in the non-Hispanic Black population. The scale of life expectancy and welfare losses underscores the pressing need to invest in health in the US to prevent further economic shocks from future pandemic threats.



Five Conditions for Success in Public Health by Dr Frieden

Public health has saved billions of lives over the past fifty years. It has also improved wellbeing for billions of others through safer water, vaccines, road safety, reduced exposure to lead, fewer workplace injuries, and more. Reducing today’s leading causes of death will come from public health interventions. 

There will be future epidemics. Experts don’t know when or what form they will take. Many lives depend on if we remain humble, continue to learn,…..

Disclaimer: Posts and opinions are my own and do not reflect the views of my employer.

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