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  • Jennifer Weber

A Critical Week

Over the course of the past year, we have had many critical moments. Those early days when we had the first shutdowns, the lines of people waiting at food banks, the ramping up of COVID testing, and more recently the roll out of the vaccines.


Right now, we are again at a critical juncture. More and more people are getting vaccinated, yet variants are leading to surges in some places and many are letting go of precautions as COVID fatigue spreads.


It is a critical time and a critical week. It is National Public Health Week.


When I decided to get my Master’s in Public Health, there were a handful of schools offering the program. Now there are hundreds of options and it is common to see people with clinical degrees pair them with an MPH. And yet, as this interest in public health has grown, the public health infrastructure itself has struggled. Like so many things, if it is working well, you don’t necessarily see it. If you aren’t working in the field, you may not even know it is there. Unfortunately, that has led to lack of funding and support. Those in public health have done amazing work with limited resources and understanding. They have done even more in the face of COVID.


Our understanding of many things has changed over the past year. For many, I hope they now have a better understanding of the important role of public health in supporting healthy communities and society. Government has certainly taken notice, with increased funding and resources. This week, let us all take a moment to time to recognize the importance of public health. Going forward, let’s continue to advocate for the science, policies, funding – and people – that are needed to support strong public health systems. Take a time this week to become an advocate for public health. Go to www.nphw.org to learn more and take action.


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