Public Health Achievements 20th Century


Creative Project – Prepare this ahead of time – BE CREATIVE!!!! HAVE FUN. Public health achievements – worth 60 points on final exam.

There are several parts to this essay – you will pull together knowledge of public health’s role in U.S. health using references. Follow directions carefully as you will be graded on inclusion of information, quality/content of information, use of references/citations. Use your preferred citation format (MLA, APA, CSE, Chicago, whatever…).

Review power points on Introduction/Definitions and Public Health Achievements / Challenges

References: MMWR Public Health Achievements 20th Century –references included below. Also link to Dr. Frieden’s Shattuck lecture on challenges in public health. Cite the references you use. You can use additional references since it is beyond 2010 – see paragraph that follows (eg, MMWR articles, power points, films, etc.)

You will want to include any contemporary issues brought up in class this semester; eg, emerging infectious diseases, vaccines, increased numbers of sexually transmitted diseases, high maternal mortality rates in U.S. women, decreased life expectancy in middle-aged white people, opioid addiction/substance abuse, health disparities, guns as a public health issue, obesity, etc.) – make sure you find and cite references.

(a) List the ten public health achievements of the 20th century.

(b) Role play essay part I – early 20th century

Objective: Demonstrate that you have knowledge of health conditions at the beginning of the 20thcentury in the U.S.

Imagine that you are living during the first two decades of the 20th century. Choose a persona for yourself. You can be a young adult (male or female), middle-aged, an older person, or a child; you can be a parent (mother or father); you can be any race/ethnicity you wish.

Choose and include the following in the creative role play. You may include photos, images, cartoons, etc.

  • Year
  • Your age, gender, race/ethnicity (give yourself a name)
  • Where you live (state, rural/urban, type of community)
  • Family situation
  • Socioeconomic conditions
  • Occupation (self or parents)
  • Educational level
  • Other relevant information (use of tobacco, nutrition, etc.)
  • Life expectancy – what would your life expectancy have been? You will have to search for this.
    • What were the leading causes of death at that time?

Create a life describing the health challenges you would have faced at the time you select. You will need to use at least four of the ‘Achievements’ references to build your creative role play. Describe conditions and challenges of the time period and conditions selected.

I would expect this essay to cover an estimated three and a half pages double-spaced, 12 font MINIMUM.

(c) Role play essay part II – 21st century

Objective: Discuss the 20th century’s public health contributions to your current life and the challenges you and YOUR children/grandchildren will face as you age in the 21st century.

Demonstrate that you have knowledge of the public health achievements of the 20th century and challenges of the 21st century. Note that the ‘Achievements’ references also address challenges still remaining in 1999. Include Dr. Frieden’s article as a reference. Cite references used.

  • Jump ahead to the years 2017/2018 – 2030. Speak in a “today voice”. Describe your medical / social history. Choose your age, geographic location, socioeconomic status, occupation, lifestyle factors, community support, etc. You will be a descendent of the character you created in your first essay.
  • “Public health has contributed significantly to the overall health of the U.S. in the 20th century”. In considering that statement, how has YOUR life changed in relation to your early 20th century ancestors’ lives? You can be better off (in many ways) or even not as good as you hoped to be due to various factors .
  • Discuss public health achievements in several areas (of the “10”) that have contributed to overall increased life expectancy. Research current life expectancy and current leading causes of death as background. Include present and future public health challenges. Show how your life has changed and describe challenges that remain (for you and/or your current or future children / grandchildren.
    • Optional: You may include the role of social media and internet: 1) personal (including the good, the bad, and the ugly 2) health (health apps, genetic testing, telemedicine, etc.)

Include references. I would expect this essay to cover an estimated two and a half pages double-spaced, 12 font MINIMUM.

Achievements in Public Health series:

Ten Great Public Health Achievements

Infectious Diseases

Tobacco use

Safer and healthier foods (nutrition)

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