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Episode 6

1 hour 4 mins


Dr. Jerome Adams, the 20th US Surgeon General, discusses various topics related to public health, including Operation Warp Speed, diversity in clinical trials, improving healthcare access and outcomes, addressing health inequities, collaborative approaches in healthcare, challenges with pricing models, the importance of prevention and health literacy, and lessons learned from COVID-19.

In this conversation, Dr. Jerome Adams discusses the impact of political pandering on public health messaging and the erosion of trust in the CDC. He emphasizes the need for proper funding and communication in the CDC to effectively respond to public health crises. Dr. Adams also highlights the importance of practical information and listening to the public, as well as supporting public health workers. He suggests protecting the independence of CDC directors and Surgeon Generals to instill trust in the organization.

The conversation also touches on the reputation of the pharma industry and the paradox of trust and distrust in public health organizations. Dr. Adams concludes by sharing his guiding principles of caring and finding common ground.


  • Operation Warp Speed was a significant achievement in public health, demonstrating the collaboration between the public and private sectors to develop and distribute COVID-19 vaccines.

  • Diversity in clinical trials is crucial to ensure that medications and treatments are effective for all populations.

  • Improving healthcare access and outcomes requires a holistic approach that addresses social determinants of health and promotes health equity.

  • Collaboration between different stakeholders, including the government, private industry, and the community, is essential to drive positive change in healthcare.

  • Pricing models in the pharmaceutical industry need to be reevaluated to ensure the affordability and accessibility of medications for all individuals. Political pandering can have a detrimental impact on public health messaging and erode trust in public health organizations.

  • Proper funding and communication are essential for the CDC to respond to public health crises effectively.

  • Practical information and listening to the public are crucial in public health communication.

  • Supporting and retaining public health workers is vital for a strong public health infrastructure.

  • Protecting the independence of CDC directors and Surgeon Generals can help build trust in the organization.

  • The pharma industry needs to address issues of inequity and community engagement to improve public perception.

  • There is a paradox of trust and distrust in public health organizations, which requires addressing underlying issues.

  • Caring and finding common ground are important guiding principles in public health work.


00:00 Introduction to Dr. Jerome Adams

02:18 Discussion on Operation Warp Speed

05:34 Importance of Diversity in Clinical Trials

09:52 Improving Healthcare Access and Outcomes

18:03 Addressing Health Inequities

23:35 Collaborative Approach in Healthcare

25:30 Challenges with Pricing Models

30:21 Importance of Prevention and Health Literacy

35:06 Lessons Learned from COVID-19

45:57 The Impact of Political Pandering

46:53 The Perception of Political Leanings

47:40 The Erosion of Trust in the CDC

49:27 The Need for Proper Funding and Communication in the CDC

51:51 The Importance of Practical Information and Listening to the Public

53:25 The Importance of Supporting Public Health Workers

54:16 Protecting the Independence of CDC Directors and Surgeon Generals

55:47 The Reputation of the Pharma Industry

58:12 The Paradox of Trust and Distrust in Public Health Organizations

01:04:07 Guiding Principles: Caring and Finding Common Ground


Operation Warp Speed Resources:


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