Episode 83 - Using Historical Epidemiology during Covid with Kaspar Staub


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Kaspar Staub (University of Zurich) talks to Merle and Lee about his work in historical epidemiology and the ways in which it helps contextualize the ongoing Covid pandemic. After first offering background on the field and his education, Kaspar discusses one of his goals, which is to help public health officials and policy makers today understand the historical context of pandemics in the past. He then talks about his work on the 1918 Influenza in Switzerland and its implications for Covid policy, along with how it - and earlier pandemics such as the 1890 “Russian Flu” - fall into the disaster memory gap. At the end, Kaspar, Merle, and Lee have a wide ranging conversation about the role human values play in responding to pandemics and how to help shape those in the future.

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