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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Susan Buchanan, MD (University of Illinois at Chicago School of Public Health)
Description: This comprehensive tome updates the previous 1998 edition by including timely topics such as disaster preparedness and the public health effects of global warming. It should be considered a comprehensive review of the field of public health.
Purpose: The purpose of this update is to continue to provide public health training that is relevant to evolving issues in the field. This book introduces and expands on growing topics such as global warming, behavioral science in public health, and chronic diseases.
Audience: Graduate-level students of public health are the intended audience. The book is extremely well written and at a level of complexity that may be a challenge to students for whom English is not their first language. The editors have recruited contributors who are leaders in their fields.
Features: The book covers academic aspects of public health such as toxicology, biostatistics, and public health infrastructure, but also includes relevant clinical and administrative topics such as infectious diseases, asbestosis, and public health management tools. Highlights include the comprehensive coverage of tobacco, alcohol, and drug abuse issues, and global infections such as malaria and zoonoses. Unfortunately, some of the graphics are clearly lifted from the Internet and are fuzzy or distorted. Some of the clinical topics, such as diabetes, focus more on the diagnosis and treatment of individuals than on the public health impact.
Assessment: This is an excellent, comprehensive overview of the field of public health for use by graduate level students. The exhaustive nature of the book has necessitated a small font size and the graphics are often not up to par. Nevertheless, as the editor iterates: the breadth of public health is widening with new diseases, emerging knowledge of old diseases, and societal changes requiring new methods of public health control. This book covers all aspects in a relevant, useful manner.