Harriet S.MeyerMD, Contributing EditorDavid H.MorseMS, Journal Review EditorRobertHoganMD, adviser for new media
by Laurie Garrett, 754 pp, $30, ISBN 0-7868-6522-9, New York, NY, Hyperion, 2000.
Prescient is the right word for Laurie Garrett's Betrayal of Trust. It would be an understatement to say that the US response to anthrax deaths has left much to be desired. Worse yet, those deaths and the specter of bioterrorism have exposed all of the weaknesses in the public health system that Garrett has documented in her usual meticulous and intelligent style. Her thesis is that the health of the public is part of the compact between citizens and their governments and that governments have broken the compact; hence, they no longer deserve the essential trust of those citizens. Furthermore, she documents how the solutions to today's major health problems are nontechnological and that the local is linked intimately with the global.
Public HealthBetrayal of Trust: The Collapse of Global Public Health. JAMA. 2002;287(3):381-382. doi:10.1001/jama.287.3.381-JBK0116-2-1