Contagious Conversations features compelling interviews with experts who are tackling some of the world’s toughest health challenges. Subscribe now to always get the latest episode each month!

 

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Latest Episode:

Helping Our Kids Through COVID cover image

 

22. Helping Our Kids Through COVID

(November 2021)

Anna King and Elizabeth Rorick of the National PTA discuss the impact of COVID-19 on schools, children and parents—especially when it comes to mental health—and their advice for nurturing healthy minds.

 

(view full transcript)

 

 


Previous Episodes

Episode 21: Vaccine Hesitancy

21. Overcoming Vaccine Hesitancy
(October 2021)

The first step is deep listening
CDC Foundation President and CEO Dr. Judy Monroe hosts Dr. Atul Nakhasi and Dr. Elizabeth Homan Sandoval, frontline doctors working on the COVID-19 response, in a discussion about how vaccine hesitancy continues to be a challenge in fighting the COVID-19 pandemic and the power of spreading culturally competent information using trusted voices in our communities.

 

(view full transcript)

 

 


 

Dr. Walensky speaks to the press after visiting the Hynes Convention Center FEMA Mass Vaccination Site

20. A Pivotal Time for Public Health
(April 2021)

“I have a vision and I have hope.”
Welcome to a special episode of Contagious Conversations, in which the CDC Director Dr. Rochelle P. Walensky joins CDC Foundation President and CEO Dr. Judy Monroe to discuss the agency’s latest work to combat COVID-19 and how public health professionals can help prepare communities for a new normal.

 

(view full transcript)

 

 


 

19. A Fighter for Patient Safety
(January 2021)

From personal tragedy to lifesaving crusade
When Dr. Evelyn McKnight was battling breast cancer in 2002, the last thing on her mind was hepatitis C. So when she and her husband Thomas learned she had contracted the virus from unsafe injection practices during her treatment, they were shocked. Now she’s sharing the story of how she turned this tragic event into an ongoing campaign for patient safety.

 

(view full transcript)

 

 


 

18. Thriving and Resilient Communities
(January 2021)

Towards a North Star of what’s possible in public health
After a career in pediatrics and both public and private health leadership, Dr. Lauren Smith is now stepping into the new position of chief health equity and strategy officer at the CDC Foundation. In this episode, she discusses the perspectives on health equity, systemic racism and community resiliency that she’s bringing to the role.

 

(view full transcript)

 

 


 

17. A Nobel Prize-Winning Career
(January 2021)

The off-the-beaten-path journey to finding hepatitis C
Meet the man whose discovery has made it possible to save millions of lives. In this episode, Dr. Harvey Alter shares the story of his 50-plus year career and how his research led to the discovery of the hepatitis C virus.

 

(view full transcript)

 

 


 

16. Raising Your Voice
(July 2020)

Tradition and collaboration in tribal communities
Chief Lynn Malerba has served as a registered nurse, as director of Cardiology and Pulmonary Services at Lawrence & Memorial Hospital, as chairwoman of the Tribal Council and now as the first female Chief of the Mohegan Tribe. And she’s now drawing on this full history as the COVID-19 pandemic sweeps disproportionately through the Native American population.

 

(view full transcript)

 

 


 

15. A Crash Course in Contact Tracing
(July 2020)

Crisis management, contact tracers and COVID-19
How much do you really know about contact tracing? And would you have what it takes to be a successful contact tracer? Dr. Joshua Sharfstein of Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Health takes listeners through the essential ins and outs of contact tracing during a public health crisis like COVID-19.

 

(view full transcript)

 

 


 

14. This Is an All-Hands-on-Deck Moment
(July 2020)

“The pandemic has opened the eyes and minds of many folks.”
Daniel E. Dawes is the director of the Satcher Health Leadership Institute at the Morehouse School of Medicine, an institute laser-focused on advancement of health equity. Now Dawes sits down to discuss the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on communities of color and marginalized populations, and the importance of understanding political determinants of health in the context of American history.

 

(view full transcript)

 

 


 

13. Redefining the Acceptable
(February 2020)

Why the best time to study public health is now
What does our nation need from the next generation of the public health workforce? Emory University’s Dr. Jim Curran discusses the demands ahead and how our universities, associations and employers are preparing people to meet them. Dr. Curran also discusses his work at CDC during the very early days of the HIV/AIDS epidemic, how far the world has come since that challenging time, and the road to eliminating the disease entirely.

 

(view full transcript)

 

 


 

12. Public Health's a Team Activity
(February 2020)

“APHA is the history of public health in the United States.”
As executive director of the American Public Health Association, Dr. Georges Benjamin knows how important it is that everyone can see themselves under the “big tent” of public health. Find out how he and the APHA’s diverse membership drive impact by staying focused on three bedrock priorities.

 

(view full transcript)

 

 


 

11. Humanitarian Aid Beyond Borders
(February 2020)

Creating a safe space for patients in conflict zones
Obstetrician-gynecologist and physician Dr. Rasha Khoury shares her experiences with Doctors Without Borders: a international humanitarian organization that provides medical aid where the need is greatest, and the recipient of the CDC Foundation’s Fries Prize for Improving Health.

 

(view full transcript)

 

 


 

10. The Answer Is on the Playground
(September 2019)

West Africa, five years after the Ebola epidemic
Dr. Judy Monroe, president and CEO of the CDC Foundation, shares stories from her recent trip to West Africa: a personal conversation on the 2014-15 Ebola outbreak, global health security, vaccination and more.

 

(view full transcript)

 

 


 

9. Celebrating the Invisible
(September 2019)

A modern history of public health
Dr. Michael McGinnis looks back on his storied career to discuss how the focus of public health has evolved from treatment to prevention, what the actual root causes of death in America are, how those leading causes are changing... oh, and that one time his team had to commandeer an elephant.

 

(view full transcript)

 

 


 

8. An Advocate for Flint
(September 2019)

A city’s collective fight for environmental justice
Pediatrician Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha shares how she became an advocate for the people of Flint, Michigan, during the water crisis, and discusses the community-centered work that is creating a better future for families and children in Flint today.

 

(view full transcript)

 

 


 

7. The Frontlines of Public Service
(September 2019)

Talking data, disease and the human condition
Dr. Robert Redfield shares his thoughts on how we can eliminate HIV in the United States by 2030, why opioid disorder is the public health crisis of our time, and what it's like to work with a team that puts science and data into action in the name of public service.

 

(view full transcript)

 

 


 

6. Ending Polio for Good
(May 2019)

On the final frontlines of a historic effort
Now that Rotary International has helped immunize more than 2.5 billion children in 122 countries, polio remains endemic only in Afghanistan, Nigeria and Pakistan. Carol Pandak discusses her work with the organization to end the disease once and for all...and what challenges still remain.

 

(view full transcript)

 

 


 

5. The State of Health
(May 2019)

Fighting for healthier communities in Louisiana
Dr. Rebekah Gee shares her journey to becoming the secretary of the Louisiana Department of Health and how she is working to fight major health challenges, such as Hepatitis C in Louisiana, and discusses the complexities of bringing together partners to work on a myriad of issues from pregnancy to poverty.

 

(view full transcript)

 

 


 

Rich Test

4. How to (Truly) Save the World
(May 2019)

Building a Culture of Health and Social Justice
Dr. Richard Besser, president and CEO of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, discusses his Foundation’s efforts to build a culture of health in America, why that effort requires a national shift in mindset, and why he still believes that working in public health is really about working to change the world.

 

(view full transcript)

 

 


 

3. All Lives Have Equal Value
(March 2019)

Reducing disease and inequality across the globe
Physician, scientist and philanthropist Dr. Sue Desmond-Hellmann, CEO of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, shares her unique career path, describes her vision for a world where every person has the opportunity to live a healthy, productive life and offers career advice for aspiring leaders and innovators.

 

(view full transcript)

 

 


 

Dr. Lex Frieden, 2017 Fries Prize for Improving Health Recipient

2. Inclusivity and the ADA
(March 2019)

Transforming the lives of Americans living with disabilities
Dr. Lex Frieden, disability rights activist and architect of the Americans with Disabilities Act, shares his personal story and his passion for independent living by people with disabilities.

 

(view full transcript)

 

 


 

 

 

1. Outbreaks and Superbugs
(March 2019)

Journalism and storytelling on the frontlines
Acclaimed journalist Maryn McKenna talks to the CDC Foundation’s Claire Stinson about what it’s like to report on the frontlines of emergency responses, the impact of antibiotics on the food we eat, and what actions we can all take on behalf of the world’s health and safety. Also: chickens.

 

(view full transcript)