Public health officials are confronting growing pressure — and threats — across the country as the backlash to the coronavirus response continues. Senior health officials from seven California counties have resigned or retired since March 15.
A new federal report sheds light on the reasons newborn syphilis rates are on the rise despite simple treatment options. But amid the COVID-19 pandemic, public health departments will struggle to respond.
It’s hard to overstate how uneven access to critical coronavirus test kits remains in the nation’s largest state. Even as some Southern California counties are opening drive-thru sites to make testing available to any resident who wants it, a rural northern county is testing raw sewage to determine whether the coronavirus has infiltrated its communities.
An early morning text. A lawyer-filled meeting on a Sunday afternoon. Emotional journal entries. And, ultimately, action. In the 24 hours before San Francisco Bay Area public health officials issued the country’s first stay-at-home order, they debated how to tackle the alarming rise in COVID-19 infections. Their decision set the course for the nation.
The pandemic has exposed massive cracks in the foundations of the U.S. public health system. Getting the country back to normal, experts say, will require a major investment in Public Health 101: training a corps of workers who can track people with the virus and prevent them from passing it to others.