Thursday, August 28, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Battling demons? When it comes to mental illness, language matters

Tuesday, August 26, 2014, 5:30 AM
We’ve seen it written dozens of times in the past week: Robin Williams was battling demons. What does this mean, anyway? For some reason, we tend to use mystical metaphors to describe the suffering of those with a mental illness, particularly depression. These images play off of anachronistic... Read more

Ben Franklin’s Treatise on Wind

Thursday, August 21, 2014, 6:00 AM
Benjamin Franklin was a man for the ages. His story is a familiar one. Born in Boston in 1706. The youngest of 17 children. Moved to Philadelphia in 1723. He gained fame for his experiments with electricity, and was a philosopher, diplomat, inventor, and scientist. He also was a specialist in another... Read more

Historical antecedents to experimental Ebola treatments

Tuesday, August 19, 2014, 6:00 AM
We had the chance this week to sit down with physician and historian Scott Podolsky to discuss the history of serum therapy, the treatment for Ebola first provided to Americans Kent Brantly and Nancy Writebol and now given to three health workers in Liberia. Podolsky is Associate Professor of Global... Read more

A Conversation About Robin Williams, Parkinson’s Disease, and Depression

Friday, August 15, 2014, 6:30 AM
Like anyone with a funny bone, my heart is heavy at the loss of Robin Williams. I had the privilege of twice seeing him perform live, including a surprise set at the Comedy Cellar in New York. His comedy–pulled from his own, often difficult, life experiences–took his audiences to great heights... Read more

Skip baseball, watch a movie

Tuesday, August 12, 2014, 6:30 AM
The Phillies are having a dismal season (and that is the politest term I can think of for describing it). So, there’s no need to sit down at night and watch another game. Turn off the TV and turn on the computer and you can stream some films about public health. Or visit your local library and... Read more

Charles Atlas: unlikely public health educator

Friday, August 8, 2014, 6:30 AM
Would you take health advice from a man in leopard-print trunks? Several generations of young men have–by sending away for Charles Atlas’s Dynamic Tension System. This was a mail-order subscription series of illustrated lessons in exercise, diet and health, presented as a series of letters... Read more

Ebola: fears, truths, answers, and actions

Tuesday, August 5, 2014, 6:30 AM
We are getting a lot of news about the ebola virus. Yes, it is extraordinarily deadly and outbreaks can have a case fatality rate of up to 90 percent. Yes, it has now spread to another country, Nigeria, And triggered some fears-but, so far, no diagnoses-in New York. The death toll in Africa is now... Read more

Can you trust open-access journals?

Friday, August 1, 2014, 6:30 AM
Just arrived in my email inbox: Dear Dr. Jonathan Purtle, Greetings!!! We solicit your valuable contribution for the Journal Family Medicine & Medical Science Research … Dear Researcher, publish in the International Journal of Medical and Applied Sciences … Decision on your paper... Read more

Healthy NewsWorks: News that's good for kids!

Wednesday, July 30, 2014, 6:30 AM
In the late 1990s and early 2000s journalists played a critical role in increasing public awareness of the obesity epidemic and related conditions. Initial scientific reports of serious complications of obesity such as type 2 diabetes occurring in children were met with skepticism. But news reports... Read more

Plague and quarantine: An old (and ongoing) practice

Thursday, July 24, 2014, 6:30 AM
Every July in Italy, Venice the Festa del Redentore (Feast of the Redeemer) celebrates the city’s deliverance from the plague, which killed 50,000 people – in Venice – between 1576 and 1577. (A mass grave of victims was dug up five years ago.) That two-year epidemic was one of the... Read more
About this blog

What is public health — and why does it matter?

Through prevention, education, and intervention, public health practitioners - epidemiologists, health policy experts, municipal workers, environmental health scientists - work to keep us healthy.

It’s not always easy. Michael Yudell, Jonathan Purtle, and other contributors tell you why.

Michael Yudell, PhD, MPH Associate Professor, Drexel University School of Public Health
Jonathan Purtle, DrPH, MPH Research Director, Drexel Center for Nonviolence and Social Justice
Janet Golden, PhD Professor of history, Rutgers University-Camden
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