The COVID-19 pandemic is still ongoing. The novel Covid-19 infection is caused by a virus known as SARS-CoV-2 (Abebe et al., 2020). It started in Wuhan, China, in December 2019. The symptoms include dyspnea, fever and cough (Abebe et al., 2020). This pandemic has claimed many lives in the United States. It started in the tenure of former President Trump, and President Biden is now handling the crisis. These two presidents had different approaches to managing this pandemic.
The first difference is how they handle their communications. At the start of the pandemic, the Trump administration held regular COVID-19 briefings, but these faded away despite the cases of COVID-19 being high. The Biden administration has handled communication differently. The White House Covid-19 response team holds briefings three times a week. Former President Trump also has inconsistencies on the infectious nature of the pandemic. At the pandemic’s start, he stated that the pandemic was contagious and kept changing his tune. He even claimed that hydroxychloroquine cured covid, which was untrue. President Biden has focused on individuals wearing masks to save lives. He required individuals in all federal buildings to wear a mask, while Trump always did not want to and flouted this regulation. Under the Trump administration, states were in charge of their COVID-19 response, while in Biden’s administration, there was greater collaboration between the state and federal governments.
If I were in charge of this pandemic as a president, I would focus more on primary preventive measures as the best way of protecting the citizens. Masks and PPEs have been proven to be effective in reducing the risk of individuals developing Covid-19 disease (Catching et al., 2021). My main focus would have been primary prevention instead of knee-jerk responses.
Abebe, E. C., Dejenie, T. A., Shiferaw, M. Y., & Malik, T. (2020). The newly emerged COVID-19 disease: A systemic review. Virology Journal, 17(1). https://doi.org/10.1186/s12985-020-01363-5
Catching, A., Capponi, S., Yeh, M. T., Bianco, S., & Andino, R. (2021). Examining the interplay between face mask usage, asymptomatic transmission, and social distancing on the spread of COVID-19. Scientific Reports, 11(1). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-021-94960-5
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Rather than focus on the treatment of chronic disease, policies that influence population health tend to emphasize prevention and wellness, the reduction or elimination of waste and the eradication of health disparities based on race, ethnicity, language, income, gender, sexual orientation, disability and other factors. The reasoning is that good health belongs to the whole, not just an individual. (New York State Dept. of Health, n.d.)
Regardless of political affiliation, every citizen has a stake in healthcare policy decisions. Hence, it is little wonder why healthcare items become such high-profile components of presidential agendas. It is also little wonder why they become such hotly debated agenda items.
Consider a topic (mental health, HIV, opioid epidemic, pandemics, obesity, prescription drug prices, or many others) that rises to the presidential level. How did the current and previous presidents handle the problem? What would you do differently?
New York State Department of Health. (n.d.). Making New York the healthiest state: Achieving the triple aim. Retrieved June 21, 2021 from https://www.health.ny.gov/events/population_health_summit/docs/what_is_population_health.pdf
Review the Resources and reflect on the importance of agenda setting.
Consider how federal agendas promote healthcare issues and how these healthcare issues become agenda priorities.
By Day 3 of Week 1
Post your response to the discussion question: Consider a population health topic that rises to the presidential agenda level. How did two recent presidents handle the problem? What would you do differently?
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