“It’s a remarkable achievement in every way,” said Dr. DiMaggio. “It was a public health triumph.”
Dr. Weinstein stepped back from his post in November 1947, seven months after the smallpox outbreak. He left a blueprint for containing an infectious disease in a large, dense city.
But this time New York is facing a logistical hurdle with the coronavirus pandemic. Infectious disease experts point to erosion of public health infrastructure – not just in the city, but across the country. However, they believe that the biggest obstacle is not its proliferation, but rather the public’s distrust of government, academia and media.
“We come from a communications train wreck,” said Dr. Speeches. “We have learned that politics is poisonous to a public health initiative, especially during a crisis. Honesty and straightforward, clear messaging are absolutely crucial. “
In 1947, Dr. Weinstein the only voice with a megaphone. He spoke and the people listened.
“It was a much simpler media landscape back then,” Ms. Sherman said as she unveiled the Ad Council’s campaign, due to begin early next year. “In today’s environment we are dealing with highly fragmented media. We will rely on micro-influencers who are the trusted voices. “
When the introduction of the Covid-19 vaccine began in New York City last week, one important question remains: Can the city come close to what it achieved 73 years ago?
Dr. Redlener, who advises Mayor Bill de Blasio on emergency response, believes New York will take on the challenge again. But he added, “It is almost inconceivable that we will be able to do something similar so quickly and effectively.”