Epidemiology Kept Simple 3rd Edition PDF – An Introduction to Traditional and Modern Epidemiology

Epidemiology Kept Simple 3rd Edition PDF

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This major re-write of Epidemiology Kept Simple was pursued with the following objectives in mind:
● To address the American Schools of Public Health (ASPH) Epidemiology Competenciesa in the first dozen chapters of the book.
● To introduce epidemiologic measures early in the book’s progression so that they can be used throughout.
● To devote full chapters to the following topics: Descriptive Epidemiology (Chapter 4), Epidemiologic Study Design (Chapter 5), Experimental Studies (Chapter 6), Observational Cohort Studies (Chapter 7), and Case–control Studies (Chapter 8).
● To provide more frequent Illustrative Examples.
● To provide additional exercises and review questions to help students learn the material.
● To extend the section on epidemiologic history (Section 1.3) to address developments in the first half of the 20th century.
The ASPH Epidemiology Competencies alluded to in the first bullet are: ‘‘Upon graduation a student with an MPH (Master of Public Health) should be able to:
1 Explain the importance of epidemiology for informing scientific, ethical, economic, and political discussion of health issues.
2 Describe a public health problem in terms of magnitude, person, time, and place.
3 Apply the basic terminology and definitions of epidemiology.
4 Identify key sources of data for epidemiologic purposes.
5 Calculate basic epidemiology measures.
6 Evaluate the strengths and limitations of epidemiologic reports.
7 Draw appropriate inferences from epidemiologic data.
8 Communicate epidemiologic information to lay and professional audiences.
9 Comprehend basic ethical and legal principles pertaining to the collection, maintenance, use, and dissemination of epidemiologic data.
10 Identify the principles and limitations of public health screening programs.
This list provides a framework for approaching the instruction of introductory epidemiology to MPH students and, in my opinion, to undergraduates as well.b Most of these Competencies draw from several areas of epidemiology. For example, Competency 1 (Explain the importance of epidemiology for . . . ) requires an understanding of epidemiologic history (Chapter 1), the causes and prevention of disease (Chapter 2), descriptive epidemiology (Chapter 4), analytic epidemiology (Chapters 5–8), and so on. Therefore, I chose not to cover competencies on a one competency per chapter basis.c However, by covering the first dozen chapters in this book the student will be well on the road to achieving all ten competencies.
The ASPH competency list is intended to improve individual performance and enhance communication and coordination across courses and programs. In that sense, it serves a useful purpose. However, I believe it is important to view this list as a starting point and not as an ultimate destination. To view the discipline of epidemiology (taught at any level) as a list of competencies does not adequately acknowledge the discipline’s depth, breadth, and complexity. To achieve this deeper understanding and appreciation of epidemiologic research and practice requires diligence, discipline, constant questioning, experience, a drive from within, and a healthy dose of epistemological modesty. After three decades in the profession, I still cannot say that I’ve fully mastered every epidemiologic competency. However, one must continue to push the boulder up hill. As Camus has said, ‘‘One must imagine Sisyphus happy.’’ So let the struggle begin.

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