The United States receives tremendous benefits from public health spending — with far more value per dollar than with most other types of health care spending.
We reviewed those benefits in a recent article, suggesting that more such spending should be considered. Then Upshot readers weighed in with their choices of what public health campaigns they’d like to see. Those included more help for mothers and babies (the Nurse-Family Partnership), and a greater focus on diabetes, nutrition, gun deaths (including suicide), loneliness and the harms of sharing hypodermic needles.
We asked some experts — officials who run public health departments, academics and leaders of funding organizations — what they think we should be doing in public health, and a few themes emerged.
Overrating doctors and hospitals
Although we spend huge sums on health care, it’s not always on the right things.
“The key to better health isn’t always to build more hospitals and train more specialists,” said Vivek Murthy, the former surgeon general. “In fact, it usually is not.”