Public Health Power Hour

Public Health Power Hour

The Public Health Power Hour from Vital Strategies looks at how the world around us shapes our health, and how we can shape our environments so that everyone, everywhere has the potential for great health. Vital Strategies is a global public health organization that seeks to accelerate progress on the world’s most pressing health problems. Our team combines evidence-based strategies with innovation to help develop and implement sound public health policies, manage programs efficiently, strengthen data systems, conduct research, and design strategic communication campaigns for policy and behavior change. To find out more, please visit


November 3, 2022 28 min

After attending the National Harm Reduction Conference in San Puerto Rico, Gloria Malone of the Overdose Prevention Program chats with two Puerto Rican harm reduction advocates. Tanagra and Carla share their insights on what Harm Reduction in Puerto Rico looks like and the unique challenges and work they are doing to save and improve lives in Puerto Rico.

This show features:

  • Carla Correa, Coalición de Coaliciones
  • Tanagra Melgarejo, ...
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    Globally, one in three children –up to 800 million–have blood lead levels that are higher than deemed safe by the World Health Organization. Despite clear evidence of harm, many countries do not have sufficient capacity to monitor or regulate lead and protect their people from widespread exposure.In this episode, we discuss how lead affects children and their families, why lead poisoning prevention been overlooked by governments an...

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    It’s not news that what we eat has a huge impact on our overall health. What’s not commonly known is that 8 million deaths are associated with poor diet –accounting for 19% of non-communicable disease deaths. Increasingly, ultra-processed foods and beverages have become readily available and have dramatically changed the way people eat, resulting in diets that are much less healthy. Our panelists discuss: What are ultra-processed f...

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    September 22, 2022 37 min

    UNGA, the United Nations General Assembly, sets policy for the United Nations. As we face generational challenges—rebuilding public health post-COVID, climate change, political instability—the successes and challenges of this global coordinating mechanism have come into focus.

    In this episode of the Public Health Power Hour we discuss“Does UNGA Matter?” and cover highlights from the United Nations General Assembly in New York over ...

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    August 15, 2022 28 min

    Over the past year, the Public Health Power Hour podcast has featured leading voices in the public health space.

    In this special episode, Sandra Mullin, Senior Vice President, and Steve Hamill, Vice President of our Policy Advocacy and Communication team, reflect on segments from their favorite episodes in a roundup of moments you shouldn't miss on the state and future of public health.

    Issues covered include social reform and ...

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    In her new book, Under the Skin:The Hidden Toll of Racism on American Lives and on the Health of Our Nation, award-winning writer Linda Villarosa argues that any effort to close the gap in health outcomes must also address the structural racism that underpins the U.S. health care system.

    She points to the adverse impact historical myths about Black bodies have had on policymaking and the way care is delivered. She displays the forc...

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    According to The Tobacco Atlas, smoking prevalence is falling globally for the first time, but countries and people marginalized by the vestiges of colonialism, by racism, bias and other social determinants are due to suffer the greatest harm.

    They suffer a triple impact, as they are the least protected by health systems and policies, less likely to have access to health care, and are targeted by the tobacco industry.

    In this episo...

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    April 7, 2022 57 min

    In this episode of the Public Health Power Hour, we discussed the impact women have when they have equal power, how COVID-19 has changed the landscape, systems and policies that can accelerate gender equity in global health leadership, and what aspiring women leaders should look for and demand in their careers.

    Panelists include:

    - Magda Robalo M.D, Global Managing Director, Women in Global Health

    - Kathleen Sherwin, Interim Presid...

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    Women’s health means ensuring that women have access to healthy environments and quality health care throughout their lives, including care for important issues during their reproductive years such as safe motherhood and access to modern contraception, safe abortions and postabortion care.

    Women often face pervasive systemic bias and stigma that lead to challenges across the health spectrum that can prevent them from living long, h...

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    This discussion focused on the past and future of public health and social reform movements, in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.

    Starting from a historical perspective of public health’s history of activism in social movements, and considering the challenges of the current moment, our panelists offer perspectives on how the field of public health can work differently towards a healthier world.

    This episode features:

    Céline Gounder, ...

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    November 18, 2021 56 min

    This Public Health Power Hour focusses on the importance of civil registration and vital statistics in ensuring people have access to the basic rights and protections afforded by a legal identity.

    The discussion highlights the #CountingEveryone campaign, which emphasizes the need for strong leadership and coordination to propel progress in counting every person, everywhere.

    With registration of all vital events, including births an...

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    This Public Health Power Hour examines activism in public health, looking at decades of HIV/AIDS activism in particular and discussing how it may apply to today’s challenges, especially confronting COVID-19 vaccine inequity.

    HIV/AIDS activism successful created a movement that changed the global public health landscape. Are there strategies, tactics, or common causes we can make to more effectively respond to the challenges of the ...

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    October 28, 2021 61 min

    Mass incarceration is a public health crisis, especially in the United States, where the incarcerated population has ballooned to 2.3 million people in prisons and jails.

    COVID-19 has amplified the crisis, underlining the urgent need to address the drivers of this era of mass incarceration. It has brought new attention the enormous health and social costs of the carceral system, amplified urgent calls for reform, and highlighted th...

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    September 30, 2021 61 min

    What impact does alcohol consumption have on global health?

    In this episode of the Public Health Power Hour we discuss the state of alcohol control and hear about countries leading the way with policies aimed at excessive consumption.

    Speakers include Alison Douglas, Chief Executive, Alcohol Focus Scotland; Adam Karpati, Senior Vice President, Public Health Programs, Vital Strategies and Pubudu Sumanasekara, Vice President, Movendi...

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    Two new reports from global tobacco watchdog STOP suggest that British American Tobacco was engaged in potentially illegal activity in Africa, including a military-style surveillance operation to disrupt competitors and hundreds of payments to influence health policy. BAT’s activity may have undermined tobacco control progress across the continent.

    On this episode of the Public Health Power Hour, join us for a discussion with those...

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    September 9, 2021 64 min

    More than 90% of the world breathes polluted air, making air pollution a global health challenge in need of urgent attention.

    On this episode of Public Health Power Hour, we discuss air pollution and respiratory health, looking at its growing health burden and its effect on children's health.

    Speakers include Qurota Ayuni, Center for Indonesian Medical Students' Activities; Alejandro Daly, UNICEF Youth Representative, Colom...

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    September 2, 2021 62 min

    This episode of the Public Health Power Hour looks forward to the United Nations General Assembly, and what it will mean for Public Health.

    COVID-19, climate change and non-communicable diseases (NCDs) are just some of the public health issues that will headline the UNGA in September.

    Join Kerry Cullinan, Africa Editor at Health Policy Watch, Tala Dowlatshahi, Consultant on Global NCDs at Vital Strategies and Rebecca Perl, Vice Pre...

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    Big Tobacco has the next generation of smokers in their sights.

    In this episode of the Public Health Power Hour, we discuss how the tobacco industry continues to target youth with new addictive products, sleek designs and candy flavors.

    Yayne Hailu, Senior Content Strategist with the global tobacco control watchdog STOP was joined by special guest Janan, Youth Ambassador, Truth Initiative, for a firsthand account of the dangers of ...

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    In this episode of the Public Health Power Hour Dr. Lisa Bowleg, an award-winning scholar on intersectionality, joins us for a discussion on how research can help foster health equity.

    Dr. Bowleg is a Professor of Applied Social Psychology at The George Washington University.

    The discussion looks at her recent paper “The Master’s Tools Will Never Dismantle the Master’s House”: Ten Critical Lessons for Black and Other Health Equity ...

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    Advertising is an essential tool for harmful industries - both in acquiring customers and shaping public and policymaker opinions to insulate them from potential regulation. This episode looks at how communicators and ad makers are fighting back against the promotion of unhealthy commodities such as tobacco and fossil fuels.

    Duncan Meisel, Campaign Director at Clean Creatives joined Nandita Murukutla, Vice President, Global Policy ...

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