Epidemiology

Public health worker in Africa distributing vaccines

Is Africa Truly Free of Wild Polio?

Utibe Effiong, MPH ’14 and Uju Okeke

Without a case on the continent for several years, the World Health Organization declared Africa free of wild polio in 2020. But questions remain about the ability to reach remote areas for vaccination programs and for disease surveillance as well as questions around the security of infectious agents held in labs for research. Read more

Microscopic image of a coronavirus

Teaching Infectious Disease History in 2020

Jon Zelner

Teaching a course on the social history of infectious disease during a pandemic poses particular challenges. Jon Zelner decided to put his students’ energies to work on public-facing content aimed at helping people make sense of this pandemic and its implications in context. Read more

Microscopic image of Ebola virus

Why Africa Still Has Ebola Outbreaks

Kennedy DuBose, Julia Duffy, Sania Farooq, Sucaad Mohamud, and Maggie Sanders

Ebola virus disease outbreaks have occurred periodically in regions of west and sub-Saharan Africa since 1976. By identifying the social and environmental issues surrounding EVD’s continuous resurgence, the world can mount better, more lasting interventions to avoid these detrimental outbreaks. Read more

Microscopic image of the AIDS virus

When the HIV/AIDS Epidemic Meets COVID-19

Claire Volkert, Jonethan James, Kourtney Young, Noreen Khan, Sydney Gurecki, and Bianca Ghita

The HIV/AIDS epidemic exposed how structural factors place individuals at an increased risk for infection, something we are seeing again today with COVID-19. Can lessons learned from the HIV epidemic help prevent us from making the same mistakes today? Read more

Microscopic image of malaria parasites infecting blood cells

The Risk of Neglecting Malaria in the Age of COVID

Jordan Silar, Leah King, Stephanie Ganzi, and Frass Ahmed

For years, high income countries have directed resources to help fight malaria in developing nations. As the COVID-19 pandemic becomes a major health concern for developed nations, what might this mean for the future of malaria-prevention efforts in low-income countries? Read more

Microscopic image of the poliovirus

What the Polio Epidemic Can Teach Us about Vaccine Hesitancy

Samantha Kasselman, Ryan Olivier, Hadley Wallace, Claire Gleason, and Kerry Lindquist

Well before the COVID-19 pandemic, vaccine hesitancy resulted in lower immunization coverage for many vaccine-preventable diseases. Vaccine hesitancy around one of those diseases—polio—can shed light on the challenges we now face with the COVID-19 vaccine. Read more