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A Dictionary of Public Health


The associate editors and correspondents suggested additions and deletions, kept me focused, corrected egregious errors, and restrained my occasional intemperate remarks (public health is entwined with politics, and public health politics can be partisan). I am beholden to them all for innumerable substantive contributions and valuable comments. Of course I take responsibility for the final work, especially for its defects. In addition to the associate editors and correspondents, many others contributed ideas, amendments, comments, or corrections. They include Onyebuchi Arah, Maureen Birmingham, Ruth Bonita, Devra Breslow, Lester Breslow, Claire-Lise Chaignat, Dominique Charron, Denis Daumerie, Charles Delacollette, Peter Drotman, Guy Eslick, Marie-Laure Granchamp Charles Guest, Max Hardiman, Basil Hetzel, David Heymann, Steven Jonas, Alex Kalache, Maurice King, David Last, Dorothyanne Last, Rebecca Last, Christina Mills, Debra Nanan, Desmond O'Byrne, Christopher Park, David Pencheon, Philippe Petit, George Pickett, Alan Schapira, Vergil Slee, Daniel Tarantola, Damien Thuriaux, Carla Troy, Emmanuelle Tuerlings, Kaat Vandemaelen, David Waltner-Toews, Elizabeth White, Brenda Wilson, and Stéphane With.

I am grateful to other colleagues in the World Health Organization and other United Nations agencies, and in Health Canada, local public health departments in Ottawa and Kingston, Ontario, in the Canadian Public Health Association, and in the Department of Epidemiology and Community Medicine at the University of Ottawa, who have discussed informally with me the meaning of the words and phrases we use in our work and in some instances took part in what were in effect focus group discussions that helped to set the boundaries, clarify my thoughts, and to provide ideas that formed the basis for definitions and discussions in this dictionary. Jonathan Last helped me to organize my electronic files. I have had much help from Carrie Pedersen and from the production editor Rosanne Hallowell at Oxford University Press, excellent copy-editing by Phyllis Jankowski and fact-checking by Kerry Doyle, as well as help from Sylvie Desrochers, Fay Draper, and Mariella Peca in the Department of Epidemiology and Community Medicine at the University of Ottawa. Without all this help, this dictionary would be a poor thing indeed. The work was done in my home office, and drafts were printed at the University of Ottawa. My wife Wendy Last read the entire first and second drafts and added cross-references and sustained me throughout the long labor. I thank her especially, and everyone else who helped me.