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January 1/8, 2019

Health as a Way of Doing Business

Author Affiliations
  • 1Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, Massachusetts
  • 2Harvard Kennedy School, Cambridge, Massachusetts
  • 3Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, California
  • 4Graduate School of Business, Stanford, California
  • 5Harvard Business School, Boston, Massachusetts
JAMA. 2019;321(1):33-34. doi:10.1001/jama.2018.18935

For too long, the worlds of business and health have been mired in a checkered, sometimes contentious, history. Millions of deaths worldwide can be attributed to risk factors including tobacco use, alcohol and drug misuse, and suboptimal dietary intake linked to commercial products. Media (including social media) coverage about the safety and cost of many consumer goods, both medical (drugs, devices) and nonmedical, reflect profound public concerns. Longstanding societal scrutiny about the role of business in environmental pollution has only increased in the era of global warming.