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Unseen Protection: How Public Health Preserved Your Life Today without You Even Realizing It | The Exchange


Mar 27, 2024

The PBS/Bloomberg Four-Part Docu Series titled “The Invisible Shield” sheds light on the importance of public health in modern life. Despite its crucial role in saving lives and protecting people from diseases, public health is often underfunded, undervalued, and misunderstood, ultimately putting our health at risk. The series explores the unsung heroes in public health, such as physicians, nurses, scientists, activists, and government officials, who work together to improve health outcomes from historical battles with diseases like cholera and smallpox to the recent COVID-19 pandemic.

In Episode 1 of the series, titled “The Old Playbook,” viewers are made aware of how public health has doubled the life expectancy of people but is currently facing a jeopardy in its system. Episode 2, “Follow The Data,” delves into the essential role of data in public health since the seventeenth century. Meanwhile, Episode 3, “Inoculation & Inequity,” addresses challenges like disinformation, skepticism of science, and distrust of government that affect public health efforts. Lastly, Episode 4, “The New Playbook,” discusses the declining life expectancy trend and the need to rethink the public health system before it’s too late.

For further learning and discussion, a discussion guide is provided with the docuseries. This guide includes powerful quotes and messages from “The Invisible Shield,” along with added context from the episodes. It also presents questions to encourage critical thinking, meaningful discussions, and enhanced understanding of public health among viewers in various settings like classrooms, community groups, homeschooling, or independent exploration.

By editor

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