Tag: #science

What we should have been doing all along: Translational Epidemiology

When I was applying to get into the DrPH program, the interviewer -- who would later become my academic advisor -- asked me for my thoughts on Translational Epidemiology. Translational Epidemiology (TE) is the use of epidemiology in different stages between identifying a population-level problem to identifying a solution for it, to evaluating what that ...

The Frictions That You’ll Encounter

Before I begin, a quick note: I worked on the Zika response in Puerto Rico during November and December of last year. A section of this blog post deals with what is happening in Puerto Rico with regards to investigating Zika cases, and it includes excerpts from news reports indicating that there is a lot ...

Face It, You Think You Know Better Than Me

There's this person, we'll call her "Ginny,"* who is an ardently anti-vaccine. She has multiple blogs, multiple social media accounts, participates in protests (traveling far and wide, money for the family be damned), and even thinks she leads a political party. Ginny has no medical or scientific training, per se. The closest she's gotten is ...

Zika, Zika, Zika! (An update)

Just a quick update on Zika: A case-control study in French Polynesia has found a strong association between Zika infection and Guillain-Barré Syndrome (GBS). That is, the proportion of cases of GBS who had previous Zika infection (confirmed by serological analyses) was significantly larger than the proportion of people without GBS who had previous Zika ...

Books you should read: “Pandemic” by Scott Sigler

In the time that I have been involved in medical science, few books that I have read have managed to get the science of infectious disease and epidemics right. (I was a lab assistant at age 16, so I'm talking about the last 20 years.) When I was in college, the movie Outbreak came out ...

Are GMOs really Satan?

The title to this post is a rhetorical question, by the way. No, GMOs (genetically-modified organisms) are not Satan. They don't even come close. At least the traditional Satan of Bible fame and such is pure evil. He means to be evil and to bring down creation. GMOs? Not so much. But what, exactly, are ...

The real story behind “Herd Immunity”

It’s not about stopping disease altogether. It’s about stopping outbreaks. It’s about the herd, not the individual. Continue reading on Medium »

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Why I won’t be live-tweeting “The Vaccine War” from Frontline on PBS

There are not “two sides” when it comes to vaccines. Vaccines save lives. Period. Continue reading on Medium »

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The entirety of the evidence

It's been a rough few days for the antivaxxers. The measles outbreak associated with Disneyland has really put them on the spot when it comes to their refusal to vaccinated. Some say that they are protecting their freedom to do whatever they want to their children (aka their "property"). When it is explained to them ...

Is the flu vaccine only 12% effective?

Synopsis The flu vaccine has low effectiveness, but that effectiveness is still better than nothing It has higher effectiveness in some age groups, lower in others There was a mismatch between the most common H3N2 influenza strain and the vaccine, bringing the effectiveness lower We need better influenza vaccine technology... Like, now! Of Sacred Cows ...