Clinical Medicine, Public Health Fields Must Work Together To Ensure Healthy Global Populations

New England Journal of Medicine: The Future of Public Health
Thomas Frieden, CDC director

“…Maximizing health requires contributions from many sectors of society, including broad social, economic, environmental, transportation, and other policies in which government plays key roles; involvement of civil society; innovation by the public and private sectors; and health care and public health action. Although there has sometimes been distrust and disrespect between the health care and public health fields, they are inevitably and increasingly interdependent; maximizing potential health gains is a defining challenge for both fields. … By working more closely together, clinical medicine and public health can help each other improve health maximally — and emphasize society’s responsibility to promote both healthy environments and consistent, high-quality care. … Working together, clinical medicine and public health can ensure that people live active and productive lives far longer than was ever thought possible” (10/29).