Global Salon Series: Fighting the First Wave with Author Peter Baldwin
March 22, 2021
COVID-19 is the biggest public health and economic disaster of our time. It has posed the same threat across the globe, yet countries have responded very differently and some have clearly fared much better than others. Peter Baldwin uncovers the reasons why in this definitive account of the global politics of pandemic. He shows that how nations responded depended above all on the political tools available - how firmly could the authorities order citizens' lives and how willingly would they be obeyed? In Asia, nations quarantined the infected and their contacts. In the Americas and Europe they shut down their economies, hoping to squelch the virus's spread. Others, above all Sweden, responded with a light touch, putting their faith in social consensus over coercion. Whether citizens would follow their leaders' requests and how soon they would tire of their demands were crucial to hopes of taming the pandemic.
This conversation included a distinguished panel featuring Dr. Maurizio Cecconi, MD, Director of the Residency School of Anaesthesia at Humanitas University, Milan; President of the European Society of Intensive Care Medicine and Dr. Eric Feigl-Ding, MD, Adjunct Senior Fellow, Federation of American Scientists; Chief Health Economist, Microclinic International, Dr. Monica Gandhi MD, MPH, Professor of Medicine and Associate Division Chief, Division of HIV, Infectious Diseases, and Global Medicine, UCSF/ San Francisco General Hospital, Dr. Scott L. Greer, PhD, Professor of Health Management and Policy, Global Public Health, and Political Science, University of Michigan in conversation with author Dr. Peter Baldwin, PhD. This dialogue was moderated by NYU Florence co-directors Dr. Larry Wolff, PhD and Dr. Perri Klass, MD.
Dr. Peter Baldwin, PhD, Professor, UCLA; Global Distinguished Professor, NYU
Peter Baldwin is interested especially in the historical development of the modern state––a broad field that has led him in many different directions. Two aspects of his work unify it. First, he has attempted to understand contemporary issues in a long historical perspective, whether that be the class coalitions that cemented the modern welfare state, the 19C public health strategies that provided the template by which the AIDS epidemic was fought a century later, the battles over intellectual property stretching back three centuries that inform, indeed determine, our current battles over copyright, downloading and internet piracy, or the ever-growing role of law as the socializer of last resort in modern society. Second, he has studied the development of the state trans-nationally, using detailed and often archival sources in half a dozen languages to marry a broad comparative approach to rigorous empiricism. His books have dealt above all with France, Germany, Britain, Sweden, Denmark and the United States. He has published works on the comparative history of the welfare state, on social policy more broadly, on public health, and on the history of copyright. Other interests have included Nazi Germany and historiography. His latest book is a global history of the development of law and crime over the past 2000 years. He has forthcoming books on Open Access and on the Covid-19 pandemic.
Dr. Maurizio Cecconi, MD, Director of the Residency School of Anaesthesia at Humanitas University, Milan; President of the European Society of Intensive Care Medicine
Dr. Maurizio graduated from both the University of Udine’s (Italy) School of Medicine and Surgery and the School of Anaesthesia and Intensive Care (2002).
During his training he won a grant for young investigators from the Italian Society of Anaesthesia, Analgesia and Intensive Care (SIAARTI) that allowed him to become a visiting fellow at St George’s Hospital where he studied perioperative haemodynamic optimisation of the high risk surgical patient. While there, he completed a doctoral degree (Doctor of Medicine) at the University of London on the evaluation of novel techniques for measuring cardiac output in critically ill patients. After completion of his training he worked as a Consultant in Italy for two years, before getting a Consultant job in Anaesthesia and Intensive Care at St George’s, where he has been working since.
Maurizio has a high interest in research. He is the author of more than 100 publications (articles, abstracts, book chapters) and has participated as a speaker at many national and international meetings. His main fields of research are haemodynamic monitoring, haemodynamic optimisation, physiology of the critically ill patient. Since 2011 he has been the Research Lead for the Adult Critical Care Directorate and is the Current Clinical Director. He is the chair of Editorial and Publishing Committee for the European Society of Intensive Care Medicine (ESICM) and an associate editor for the journal 'Intensive Care Medicine'. He regularly supervises doctoral degrees.
Dr. Eric Feigl-Ding, MD, Adjunct Senior Fellow, Federation of American Scientists; Chief Health Economist, Microclinic International
Dr. Eric Feigl-Ding (Eric Ding) is an epidemiologist and health economist and an Adjunct Senior Fellow at the Federation of American Scientists in Washington DC, and Chief Health Economist for Microclinic International.
In January 2020, he was recognized in the media as one of the first to alert the public on the pandemic risk of COVID-19. He is part of FAS’s work to stop COVID misinformation, and communication with lay public.
He was previously a faculty and researcher at the Harvard Chan School of Public Health and Harvard Medical School between 2004-2020.
Dr. Feigl-Ding’s work focuses on the intersection of public health and public policy. He also currently works on behavioral interventions for prevention, Medicare cost and quality improvements, drug safety, diabetes/obesity prevention, and public health programs in the US. He has further expertise in designing and conducting randomized trials, systematic reviews, public health programs, public policy implementation, and leveraging big data for improving health systems.
He was noted in his role as a whistleblower and leader of a key two-year-long investigation into the controversial drug safety and risk data of Vioxx®, Celebrex®, and Bextra® that drew FDA and national attention. Highlighted and express-published in JAMA, as corresponding joint-first author, he was also recognized for his role in the New York Times, and in the book Poison Pills: The Untold Story of the Vioxx Drug Scandal.
A childhood survivor and cancer prevention advocate, he was called one of the ‘Facebook philanthropists‘, founding the 6 million member online Campaign for Cancer Prevention, featured in Newsweek in 2008. In total online reach, he directed disease prevention advocacy platforms with over 12 million members on Facebook Causes. He led the first ever direct-to-science online crowdfunding initiative, fundraising over $500,000 (median public donation $15) for medical research, and featured in the New York Times in 2009.
He had founded the first geo-social network and public alert system for drinking water toxic contamination, as featured in WIRED. He established the Toxin Alert Drinking Water Database with 500,000-locations nationwide for informing the public about water hazards in communities. For his work, he was awarded the 2017 Mark V. Anderson Leadership Award from Sigma Chi Foundation.
He has published in leading journals, including the New England Journal of Medicine, Journal of the American Medical Association, The Lancet, and Health Policy. His 150+ publications have received 70,000 citations (H-Index 77). As a Web of Science Highly Cited Researcher, he was ranked in 2018 as among the Top 1% of all scientists worldwide.
Altogether, his competitively awarded projects as PI/Director have received over $10 million in funding. A World Economic Forum Global Shaper, he has chaired committees for the Health Directorate of the European Commission, advised the World Health Organization, Denmark Ministry of Health, and served as a member of the Global Burden of Disease Project. He also advised and successfully convinced the C-suite leaders of a major Fortune 100 food/beverage company to adopt the WHO health recommendations for added sugars.
Dr. Feigl-Ding graduated from The Johns Hopkins University with Honors in Public Health and Phi Beta Kappa. He then completed his dual doctorate in epidemiology and doctorate in nutrition, as the youngest graduate to complete his dual programs at age 23 from Harvard SPH. Teaching at Harvard for over 15 years, he has advised and mentored two dozen students and lectured in more than a dozen graduate and undergraduate courses, for which he received the Derek Bok Distinction in Teaching Award from Harvard College.
Dr. Monica Gandhi MD, MPH, Professor of Medicine and Associate Division Chief, Division of HIV, Infectious Diseases, and Global Medicine, UCSF/ San Francisco General Hospital
Monica Gandhi MD, MPH is Professor of Medicine and Associate Division Chief (Clinical Operations/ Education) of the Division of HIV, Infectious Diseases, and Global Medicine at UCSF/ San Francisco General Hospital. She also serves as the medical director of the HIV Clinic at SFGH ("Ward 86").. Dr. Gandhi completed her M.D. at Harvard Medical School and then came to UCSF in 1996 for residency training in Internal Medicine. After her residency, Dr. Gandhi completed a fellowship in Infectious Diseases and a postdoctoral fellowship at the Center for AIDS Prevention Studies, both at UCSF. She also obtained a Masters in Public Health from Berkeley in 2001 with a focus on Epidemiology and Biostatistics.
Dr. Gandhi's current research program is on identifying low-cost solutions to measuring antiretroviral levels in resource-poor settings, such as determining drug levels in hair samples. Dr. Gandhi also works on pre-exposure prophylaxis and treatment strategies for HIV infection in women. .
Dr. Gandhi also has an interest at UCSF in HIV education and mentorship. Dr. Gandhi co-directed the "Communicable Diseases of Global Health Importance" course in the Global Health Sciences Masters program from 2008-2015, and serves as the overall Education Director of the HIV, ID and Global Medicine Division. She also served as the principal investigator of an R24 mentoring grant from the NIH focused on nurturing early career investigators of diversity in HIV research, is the co-Director for the Center for AIDS Research (CFAR) Mentoring Program, and is the Chair of the Advisory Board for the UCSF Building Interdisciplinary Research Careers in Women's Health (BIRCWH). She directs the HIV/ID Consult Service at San Francisco General Hospital (SFGH) and attends on the inpatient Infectious Diseases consult service.
Dr. Scott L. Greer, PhD, Professor of Health Management and Policy, Global Public Health, and Political Science, University of Michigan
Scott L. Greer, PhD, a political scientist, is Professor of Health Management and Policy, Global Public Health, and Political Science (by courtesy) at the University of Michigan and is also Senior Expert Advisor on Health Governance for the European Observatory on Health Systems and Policies.
He researches the politics of health policies, with a special focus on the politics and policies of the European Union the politics of public health, and the impact of federalism on health care. Before coming to Michigan, he taught at University College London. He has published over a hundred book chapters and articles in journals including the Lancet, British Medical Journal, Milbank Quarterly, American Journal of Public Health, Social Science and Medicine, Journal of European Public Policy, Journal of European Social Policy, and Journal of Health Politics, Policy and Law. His most recent books include Everything you always wanted to know about European Union health policies but were afraid to ask (2014, second edition 2019, third edition forthcoming), Strengthening health system governance: better policies, stronger performance (2015), Federalism and Decentralization in European Health and Social Care (2013), European Union Public Health Policies (2013), Civil Society and Health (2017), Federalism and Social Policy (2019), The European Union after Brexit (2020), The Populist Radical Right and Health (2021) and Coronavirus Politics (2021).
Dr. Perri Klass, MD, Co-Director, NYU Florence (Moderator)
Perri Klass is Professor of Journalism and Pediatrics at New York University and Co-Director of NYU Florence. She attended Harvard Medical School and completed her residency in pediatrics at Children’s Hospital, Boston.
She writes the weekly column, “The Checkup,” for the New York Times Science Section. She has written extensively about medicine, children, literacy, and knitting. Her new book, A Good Time to Be Born: How Science and Public Health Gave Children a Future, is an account of how victories over infant and child mortality have changed the world. She began writing about medicine and about medical training when she was a medical student; her accounts were collected in her two books, A Not Entirely Benign Procedure: Four Years as a Medical Student, and Baby Doctor: A Pediatrician’s Training, which were originally published in 1987 and 1992, and were reissued as classics of the genre in updated editions in 2010. Her most recent book of medical journalism is Treatment Kind and Fair: Letters to a Young Doctor. Her medical journalism has appeared in a wide variety of publications, including The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, The New Yorker, The New England Journal of Medicine, and Harvard Medicine. Her other nonfiction includes Every Mother is a Daughter: the Neverending Quest for Success, Inner Peace, and a Really Clean Kitchen, which she coauthored with her mother, Sheila Solomon Klass, and Quirky Kids: Understanding and Supporting Your Child With Developmental Differences, which she coauthored with Eileen Costello, M.D., and which will come out in a new edition from the American Academy of Pediatrics in early 2021.
Perri is the National Medical Director of Reach Out and Read, a national program which promotes early literacy through pediatric primary care, with guidance about reading aloud for parents and children’s books provided at routine well child visits. She ran the National Center from its inception through 2006, during which time the program grew from a single site to a national program with thousands of sites serving millions of children; the program now reaches 4.8 million children a year, 80% of whom are growing up in poverty. Through her work with Reach Out and Read, Perri has been able to integrate her commitment to the health care of young children with her love of the written word. In an essay on the program, she wrote, "When I think about children growing up in homes without books, I have the same visceral reaction as I have when I think of children in homes without milk or food or heat: It cannot be, it must not be. It stunts them and deprives them before they've had a fair chance."
She has received numerous awards for her work as a pediatrician and educator including the 2007 American Academy of Pediatrics Education Award, which recognizes her educational contributions that have had a broad and positive impact on the health and well-being of children; the 2006 Women’s National Book Association Award; and the 2011 Alvarez Award from the American Medical Writers Association. In 2016 the American Academy of Pediatrics honored her with The Arnold P. Gold Foundation Humanism in Medicine Award, citing the impact that she has made through her writing, service as an educator, and leadership in promoting early literacy through Reach Out and Read.
Dr. Larry Wolff, PhD, Co-Director, NYU Florence (Moderator)
Professor Wolff works on the history of Eastern Europe, the Habsburg Monarchy, the Enlightenment, and on the history of childhood. He tends to work as an intellectual and cultural historian. He has been most interested in problems concerning East and West within Europe: whether concerning the Vatican and Poland, Venice and the Slavs, or Vienna and Galicia. In the book Inventing Eastern Europe (1994) he developed the argument that Eastern Europe was "invented" in the eighteenth century, by the philosophes and travelers of the Enlightenment, who attributed meaning to a supposed division of Europe into complementary regions, Western Europe and Eastern Europe. Professor Wolff has analyzed Western perspectives on Eastern Europe as a sort of "demi-Orientalism," negotiating a balance between attributed difference and acknowledged resemblance. In books about Venetian perspectives on Dalmatia (Venice and the Slavs, 2001) and Habsburg perspectives on Galicia (The Idea of Galicia, 2010), he has attempted to explore the meaning of "Eastern Europe" within imperial frameworks and the ideology of empire. His research on the history of childhood has included books on child abuse in Freud's Vienna (Postcards from the End of the World, 1988) and child abuse in Casanova's Venice (Paolina’s Innocence, 2012). His most recent book, The Singing Turk (2016), concerns Turkish subjects on the European operatic stage during the long eighteenth century, and analyzes musical and dramatic representations in the context of European-Ottoman relations. His current research concerns Woodrow Wilson and Eastern Europe. Professor Wolff also writes music and opera criticism.