The World Health Organization does a tremendous job advancing the cause of global public health. But two recent, major screw-ups show that the institution is far from perfect. In one instance, a group of UK scientists accused the WHO of spreading "blatant misinformation."
Completely banning alcohol would only prevent about 3.5% of cancer deaths. That, of course, means the other 96.5% of fatal cancers are caused by things other than alcohol. Given that cancer is the #2 leading cause of death in America, there's a good chance that you're going to die of cancer no matter what you do. So chill out and have a drink.
In a press release, the American Heart Association sensationalized research presented at its meeting, then included a disclaimer that the research may not be accurate. And the association doesn't necessarily endorse it. And then the Surgeon General posted it on Twitter.
A long campaign season might make American politicians uniquely incentivized not to solve problems. It's easier to raise money and scare up enough votes to get elected by promising change, rather than actually delivering it. This harms public health.
In the wake of over 1,000 injuries and dozens of deaths due to vaping, the public is right to be concerned about the safety of e-cigarettes. Given that we have covered this issue in some depth, we wanted to provide a resource that answers as many questions as possible and provides links to our other articles.
Teenagers are rebellious and they do stupid things. Given the range of options available to them -- from drinking and driving to unprotected sex -- vaping is a rather mild vice. However, it is still harmful, so laws need to be in place to prevent teens from getting them.
The other day, CNN hosted a 7-hour long climate change town hall for the Democratic presidential candidates. This, of course, isn't the only scientific topic of relevance to Americans. If we were running the debate, we would ask questions about the following science and health topics: Vaccines, opioids, energy policy, alternative medicine, vaping, stem cells, and genetic engineering.
While an investigation is underway into the exact nature of the problem, so far the likeliest explanation is that improper use of vaping devices has led to illness, or the death, of some users. But that sort of nuance isn't governing the thinking of the FDA or CDC officials, both of which are allowing myths and fearmongering to drive their policies and public statements.
Since our founding in 1978, ACSH has stood for evidence-based science and health in combination with free markets and individual liberty. We feel that an educated public should be free to make its own decisions without a "nanny state" micromanaging our behavior. Occasionally, however, our guiding principles encounter intractable problems. Today, two of the biggest such problems involve public health.
It shouldn't really be a surprise when this California city, which doesn't have a clue about the importance of public health, implements a policy that will help kill people.
To this question, James Mattis once famously answered, "Nothing. I keep other people awake at night." But not everybody is as courageously confident as this General. So what are the top health and safety concerns on the minds of security officials? Let's take a look.