Virtual Middlebury

Open to the Public

Who’s Responsible for Our Health? The limits of public health paternalism.

COVID-19 is an example of a public health threat in which government interventions reach their current upper limit; beyond that, community protection depends on individual behavior. Many public health problems exist at this interface, pitting community health promotion against individual liberties. In this talk, Pam Berenbaum explores the tensions between paternalism and liberty and how they are resolved (or not) through public health policy, using several examples of interventions, statutes, and public compliance.

Pam Berenbaum (MPH, Harvard School of Public Health) is professor of the practice of global health and director of the Global Health Program at Middlebury College. Prior to joining Middlebury, she was an infectious disease epidemiologist at the Vermont Department of Health, where she specialized in syndromic surveillance, bioterrorism, and all-hazards emergency preparedness, collaborating with personnel from other state agencies as well as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Sponsored by:
Provost's Office; Office of Advancement

Contact Organizer

Borden, Gail A.