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Healing Gotham: New York Citys Public Health Policies for the Twenty-First Century

by Bruce F Berg Johns Hopkins University Press
Pub Date:
Pbk 312 pages
AU$69.00 NZ$72.17
Product Status: Available in Approx 14 days
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Throughout its history, New York City has been challenged by a variety of public health crises. Since the nineteenth centurywhen it became one of the first American cities to develop a comprehensive public health infrastructureNew York has also stood at the forefront of formulating and implementing urban health policy.Healing Gotham examines in depth how the city has responded to five serious contemporary public health threats: childhood lead poisoning, childhood asthma, HIV/AIDS, obesity, and West Nile virus. Bruce F. Berg examines the rise and incidence of each condition in the city while explaining why the array of primary tools utilized by urban policy makersincluding monitoring and surveillance, education, regulations, and the direct provision of serviceshave been successful in controlling public health problems. He also argues that forces such as race and ethnicity, New York Citys relationship to the state and federal government, the promotion of economic development, and the availability of knowledge related to preventing, treating, and managing illness all influence effective public health policy making. By contrasting these five particular cases, this exciting study allows scholars and students to compare public health policy through time and across type. It also helps policy makers understand how best to develop and implement effective public health strategies around the United States.

1. Introduction
2. Lead Poisoning in Children
3. Managing Asthma
4. Living with HIV/AIDS
5. Helping a City Lose Weight
6. The First Appearance of West Nile Virus
7. Conclusion

For the past two centuries, New York City has been both the source of many of the worlds most challenging urban public health problems and the cradle of its most innovative health solutions. In this timely, well-written, and engaging book, Bruce F. Berg focuses on the role of political and governance systems, givingHealing Gotham a perspective distinct from other accounts. Few scholars have offered in-depth investigations of the lessons learned from the citys experiences in public health, and fewer still have considered multiple health issues. Nicholas Freudenberg, City University of New York, coeditor ofCities and the Health of the Public Berg systematically dissects the social, economic, and political forces shaping the policy responses of a leading public health department to five critical challengeslead poisoning, asthma, AIDS, obesity, and West Nile virus. Both the policy specialist and more general reader will find this book absorbing and insightful. Frank J. Thompson, Rutgers University, author ofMedicaid Politics: Federalism, Policy Durability, and Health Reform

Bruce F. Berg is an associate professor of political science at Fordham University. He is the author of New York City Politics: Governing Gotham.