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Medicine, Science, Public Health Must Merge For The Greater Good - The Scientist - Magazine of the Life Sciences

Medicine, Science, Public Health Must Merge For The Greater Good - The Scientist - Magazine of the Life Sciences


My own background in schools of medicine and institutions for biomedical research perhaps leads me to stress the opportunities for those disciplines to impact research and education at schools of public health. While the agenda of such schools has turned more and more to hospital administration and the rationalization of the health-care system, this must not be to the neglect of using science for the most effective population-based measures to protect public health. These measures will be largely, not exclusively, in the preventive sphere (T. Hancock, M. Garrett, Futures, 27:935-51, 1995). However, the typical separation of schools of public health and medicine has left a major gap in the scientific education and social sensitization of both groups. In 1988, the Institute of Medicine (IOM) conducted a study called "The Future of Public Health," chaired by the late Richard Remington, a professor of public health at the University of Iowa. It defined public health as "organized community efforts aimed at the prevention of disease and promotion of health. It links many disciplines and rests upon the scientific core of epidemiology." With ever-increasing aliquots of our gross national product and government expenditures going into the medical care of individual patients,
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