We remain in the midst of the world’s worst health crisis in a century. Millions of cases of COVID-19 have been diagnosed around the world and hundreds of thousands of deaths have ensued. So, who should we blame? Well, I think a more important question is, where does blame get us?
The adage “never discuss politics or religion” is invariably proffered to us with well-meaning intent at some point during our life. If anything, when it comes to public health issues, we need to be discussing politics more, not less, and certainly not avoiding it altogether.
It is said that democracy is a frail flower in need of constant nurturing. Having decried our slip toward fascism (in Croakey and the Public Health Association of Australia blog) I thought it useful to think about actions the public health movement might take to stand up for democracy.
Two hugely important public health objectives – Black Lives Matter and COVID-19 have been framed as competing imperatives. They are not. The Black Lives Matter movement in Australia seeks to highlight the deplorable circumstances of disadvantage and discrimination experienced by Australia’s First people.
Australia’s response to COVID-19 so far, has been one of the better examples globally: consistently led by medical and scientific advice. It was bipartisan, cooperative and decisive. Yet, this success has come at significant costs.
By David Templeman, former Director General of Emergency Management Australia and President of the Public Health Association Australia As states … More
The fires, floods and COVID-19 pandemic have shown the fragility of industrial civilisation and the strength and resilience of people and community.
As coronavirus restrictions continue to ease, one of the key challenges we face is how to deal with people moving around a lot more.
Many jurisdictions around the world are now testing people without symptoms as part of efforts to manage COVID-19. In Victoria, asymptomatic health-care workers have been part of the recent “testing blitz”.
You can almost hear the collective sigh of relief as coronavirus restrictions are eased across Australia.
The recently created National COVID-19 Coordination Commission has been set up to advise on all non-health aspects on the pandemic. But there are serious concerns about its scope, membership and authority.
As of 10 May over four million COVID-19 cases had been reported worldwide, with 280,000 confirmed deaths. The pandemic has highlighted the need for strong national health systems and regional infectious disease monitoring.
Last week the head of Australia’s Digital Transformation Agency, Randall Brugeaud, told a Senate committee hearing an updated version of Australia’s COVIDSafe contact-tracing app would soon be released. That’s because the current version doesn’t work properly on Apple phones.
Social distancing is largely self-regulated, with people generally doing the right thing on their own. The police are enforcing these important public health guidelines, notably in public places. But are police enforcing restrictions equally, without any racial discrimination?
For many of us, forced to work at home or to not work at all, the COVID-19 crisis has driven home the importance of mental health and how work interacts with our sense of wellbeing.
Major cities and their birds are breathing easier. Across China, smog has given way to the colour blue. Even the snow-capped Himalayas are visible from parts of Northern India for the first time in local’s memories.
One in two Australians has a chronic disease or condition such as diabetes, asthma, heart disease or cancer. Chronic disease is driven – and made worse – by social and economic inequities; disadvantaged communities and groups experience higher rates of chronic disease and poorer health outcomes
To understand the spread of COVID-19, the pandemic is more usefully viewed as a series of distinct local epidemics. The way the virus has spread in different countries, and even in particular states or regions within them, has been quite varied.
Imagine you have just been told you have COVID-19. We know this is infectious, so the chances are, you may well have given it to others already.
Now is not the time to cut funding to the world’s leading public health support agency.
Patents and related intellectual property rights can present formidable barriers to procuring medicines, vaccines, diagnostic tests and medical devices.
The Coronavirus pandemic draws our attention to the importance of public health in maintaining global human health
As the extraordinary health toll mounts around the world it might seem perverse to be talking about the positive impacts of the pandemic crisis that has changed our lives.
The world has changed. Few people on the planet could have remained unaffected by the events of the first three months of 2020.
The features of cruises and cruise ships, closed environments, close contact between travellers from many countries, and the transfer of crew (and sometimes passengers) between ships, mean that cruise ships are a susceptible to the spread of infectious diseases.
If you have a baby, you may be worried about them catching the coronavirus, particularly after media reports of an Australian infant diagnosed with it.
If the flurry of new orders released in the last 24 hours has you feeling confused about what’s OK and what’s not when it comes to social contact, you’re not alone