An Action-Oriented Response to Public Health: Where We Were, Where We Are, and Where We Need to Go
December 8th @ 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
The 175th Cutter Lecture on Preventive Medicine
Fellow, Petrie Flom Center, Harvard Law School
Women and Public Policy Program, Harvard Kennedy School
Executive Fellow, Harvard Business School
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is a 76 year-old agency and a national treasure that, for many, first came to the public’s eye in February 2020 as the earliest cases of Covid-19 reached American shores. I had the great privilege of leading the CDC for some of the most trying years of its history. Using examples from some of the public health challenges during my tenure – from Covid to Mpox to paralytic polio – I will unpack the details as to how and why some decisions were made. I will outline some of the major challenges in public health that lie ahead – from workforce to data and laboratory infrastructure to limited authorities that constrain the ability of the CDC to swiftly act in the face of infectious threats. And, I will leave plenty of time for questions to shed some light on my wholly unexpected transition from serving as a physician-scientist leader in academia to heading a federal agency of 12,000 in the midst of a once-in-a-century pandemic.
Open to the public.
Seating is first come, first served. There will be an overflow room in the event that the main auditorium is filled.