Larry Brilliant 2006 TED talk on epidemics and how we stop them

dug dug Follow Mar 31, 2020 · 1 min read
Larry Brilliant 2006 TED talk on epidemics and how we stop them
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The TED embed code doesn’t seem to be working for some reason so here’s the video on TED.com

This an amazing talk, well worth having a look at. Larry was a part of the UN’s fight against Smallpox and he tells his story of achieving this drop in cases on a global scale in a time before the internet made these things seem possible and maybe even simple.

Smallpox’s last stand was in India. 150,000 medical professionals made over 1 Billion house calls showing a photograph of a child sick with Smallpox asking “is this happening in your house?”

It’s all the more sobering because it reminds us of how we’re never going to overcome these challenges as nation-states. The work in the 60s and 70s should really remind us of why we created the UN, or for that matter the European Union. Populist forces in Europe and elsewhere are threatening all these achievements and we’ve somehow forgotten that we cared about this stuff…

Larry describes the importance of testing, or more specifically, the critical nature of having accurate data to drive the containment and eradication efforts.

When we didn’t search, we had the illusion that there was no disease, When we did search, we had the illusion that there was more disease, A surveillance system was necessary. What we needed was early detection, early response…



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dug
Written by dug Follow
Hiya, life goes like this. Step 1: Get out of bed. Step 2: Make things better:-)