Inaugural Bloomberg Summit to Address Biggest Public Health Issues

The event is hosted by the Bloomberg American Health Initiative, which works to address public health issues in the U.S. such as addiction and overdose, obesity and the food system, violence, risks to adolescent health, and environmental health issues.

A group of health experts, civic leaders, and national policymakers will speak during the inaugural Bloomberg American Health Summit, which is taking place Nov. 29-30 in Washington, D.C. They will address some of the most significant public health issues in the United States, including the opioid crisis and gun violence.

Scheduled speakers include:

  • Michael R. Bloomberg, mayor of New York City from 2002-2013, founder of Bloomberg Philanthropies, and WHO Global ambassador for noncommunicable diseases
  • Michael Botticelli, director of national drug control policy under President Barack Obama
  • Arne Duncan, former U.S. secretary of Education
  • Walter Isaacson, president and CEO of the Aspen Institute
  • Gina McCarthy, former EPA administrator and director of the Center for Climate, Health, and the Global Environment
  • Marion Nestle, professor emerita of nutrition, food studies, and public health at New York University
  • Josh Sharfstein, director of the Bloomberg American Health Initiative
  • Leana Wen, president of Planned Parenthood and former commissioner of health for the city of Baltimore
  • Ronald J. Daniels, president of Johns Hopkins University
  • Ellen MacKenzie, dean of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health
  • Tom Wolf, governor of Pennsylvania

The event is hosted by the Bloomberg American Health Initiative, which works to address public health issues in the U.S. such as addiction and overdose, obesity and the food system, violence, risks to adolescent health, and environmental health issues. It was created in 2016 with a $300 million gift from Bloomberg Philanthropies to the Bloomberg School and is working to train a new generation of professionals committed to improving public health nationwide.

"I believe that the type of public health leadership and innovation we will see at the summit can help the nation change this trajectory—and help Americans live longer, healthier lives," Michael Bloomberg said. "The summit comes at a critical time for public health in our nation. Life expectancy in the United States has declined for two years in a row, a grim milestone last reached more than 50 years ago."

Participation in the summit is by invitation only, but a livestream of the event will be available online.

The American Public Health Association Governing Council adopted 12 new policy statements on Nov. 13 at APHA's 2018 Annual Meeting and Expo in San Diego; they concern some of the same topics that the Bloomberg Summit will address. One of the 12 policy statements concerns preventing tuberculosis infection among health workers around the world. The full policy statements will be posted in early 2019, according to APHA.

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