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Notes from Tampa

Ami Banerjee
Last edited 10th June 2009
This week, the Florida Gulf coast played host to the world’s largest meeting of chronic disease epidemiologists. This was the 49th meeting of the American Heart Association Cardiovascular Disease Epidemiology and Prevention Conference and is combined with the Nutrition, Physical Activity and Metabolism conference over 5 days.

How big is a number?

Carl Heneghan
Last edited 26th May 2009
Over a Coffee in Oxford’s Blackwell’s Bookshop at the weekend I perused a copy of Andrew’ Dilnot’s book on the Tiger that isn’t: seeing through a world of numbers. The section that caught my eye was “How big is a number?”. What Dilnot wants to get over to the reader is an understanding of big numbers that are so large they make you switch off. When he comes across one of these million dollar statements about numbers – or in the case of banks billions if not trillions - he tries to break it down into its constituent components, in order to come up with some overall sense of whether the number is believable and also whether it is likely to make a difference. Or whether it is just trying to impress you with another sensationalist claim.

Conflict as a threat to health

Ami Banerjee
Last edited 10th June 2009
In his first formal Presidential address in 1953, Dwight Eisenhower said, “Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed. This world in arms is not spending money alone. It is spending the sweat of its laborers, the genius of its scientists, the hopes of its children. This is not a way of life at all in any true sense. Under the clouds of war, it is humanity hanging on a cross of iron.”

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