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OUR GREATEST RESPONSIBILITY in public health today is to apply the knowledge that research has given us, to narrow the gap between what we know and what we do for increasing millions of chronically ill and aged in our population.
Our greatest danger is what I call the Great Day Syndrome, the futile waiting with idle hands and bleeding hearts for that great day when science will have given us immunity to cancer, heart disease, and the other chronic killers and cripplers.
In our efforts to avoid this danger and to deal with the chronic diseases, the traditional methods of public health are not enough. And by "traditional methods" I mean the impersonal approach to public health, the reliance on environmental sanitation and public education which has served so effectively in the battle against infectious disease.
This battle goes on and the traditional methods must not be neglected. But on
Knott LW. I. The New Frontier in Public Health. JAMA. 1962;181(4):322-324. doi:10.1001/jama.1962.03050300042009