SURVIVAL: The Story of Global Health

This attractive title is the headline of the documentary film that is available on the Internet. It has 10 chapters dealing with various topics connected with human health through history. For example, the first chapter explains how our species of humanoid survived and not the others; the second chapter considers mothers and children and their protection; the third chapter puts we humans in relation to the microbes which are not necessarily harmful and are often beneficial; it follows with the story of the same microbes that have changed (mutated) and became a challenge…and so on. However, the most intriguing and interesting chapter is about pandemics and epidemics, including the today’s world concern regarding vaccination, since it has attracted the biggest audience and comments.

The film is available on YouTube, so we recommend it to all who are interested and care for our individual as well as global health.

The main driving force in creating this film was a young Croatian scientist, Professor Igor Rudan, who has now been working in the Centre for Global Health at Edinburgh University and has already been awarded membership of the Royal Society, a prestigious scientists’ association in the UK. Besides, Thomson Reuters and the American Institute for Scientific Information put Dr Rudan among the leading scientific minds of today, while in the UK he received the Chancellor’s Award, one of the most prestigious prizes in British academia.

One of his comments regarding the interest in and decision to make this documentary film about human health was the hysteria that overflew the Internet regarding the MMR (measles, mumps and rubella) vaccination issue. His concern is that seductive and often ill-informed or biased information can be published online where it can easily attract people and strongly influence their views, while more serious, informed and independent scientific discussions are left behind and not visible enough. Dr Rudan thinks that putting an effort into explaining the facts to the public is very worthwhile. However, he also says: „We could try to fix things this way (spreading scientific facts) or we can let things go with the flow. What will happen then is that probably we will again have several ten millions of people die in pandemics or epidemics and after that nobody in the following 50 years will speak against the vaccination again“.

Since 2004 Dr Igor Rudan has dedicated his career to the subject of international global health, with a special interest in reducing the mortality of children.

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