Control of Infectious Diseases Vs Tobacco Use
In the past century, America has had great success in increasing life expectancy, since its achievement of the public health policies. Though there are over twenty public health achievements made over the century, the control of infectious diseases and tobacco use are the two critical achievements that seem to stand out. It is for these accomplishments that the health status of Americans has been improved, enhancing the quality of life.Control of Infectious Diseases Vs Tobacco Use
A social habit that was once accepted in the United States is now the cause of millions of deaths, and has proved to be a long lasting problem. Smoking was accepted in the nineteenth century until in the twentieth century when lung cancer became an epidemic among cigarette smokers. Over the century, researchers have documented over 10000 articles that link smoking to cancer. After years of research, the Advisory Committee to the U.S. Surgeon General declared cigarette smoking as a cause of lung cancer in 1964.Control of Infectious Diseases Vs Tobacco Use
It is only after the declaration of cigarette smoking as a health hazard in United States that efforts were made to control this habit. Passive smoking, which is usually as a result of exposure to environmental tobacco smoke, was also declared to have adverse health effects to the public. Even though the number of deaths associated with cigarette smoking has reduced, the habit is still on-going; thus, posing risk to the next generation (Prohaska et al., 2012).
On the other hand, the declaration made on the control of infectious diseases saw a massive drop of infant, and child mortality. In 1900, the mortality rate for children under the age of 5 was 34%, but with the changes made in the health sector, the number had decreased to 1.4% in 1997.
Before the discovery of micro-organisms as the cause of infectious diseases, the leading causes of deaths were tuberculosis, pneumonia, and diarrhea. Decades later, the discovery of antibiotics, implementation of childhood immunization programs, and improvement of hygiene and sanitation has considerably decreased child mortality (Tulchinsky & Varavikova, 2009).
Immigration due to industrialization in the beginning of the twentieth century was among the factors that caused the repeated outbreaks. Moreover, the efforts made by the local, state and federal government in improving public health are the reason behind disease prevention. This has been achieved through campaigns on water treatment, food safety, hand washing, and other hygienic practices that prevent infections