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Your Tewksbury Today

Public Health Museum Sponsors 'Outbreak 2016' Program

Aug 24, 2016 08:00AM ● By Theresa Gilman

Outbreak 2016 participants pose with veterinarian Michael McGuill, DVM, MPH from Tufts University School of Veterinary Medicine

(Editor's Note: this content was provided by the Department of Public Health and the Public Health Museum.)

The Public Health Museum, located on the campus of Tewksbury Hospital, recently held a week-long program for high school juniors and seniors interested in exploring the world of public health.  “Outbreak 2016” hosted 22 students from area high schools on August 1-5 and introduced them to a variety of topics, including epidemiology, veterinary public health, food-borne illness, medical and public health bioethics, infectious diseases, and oral health.

Participants had the opportunity to engage with health professionals, trace the history of public health through a fascinating tour of the Museum and its artifacts, and meet program alumni who are pursuing careers in health care and public health.

A highlight of the week was a field trip to the State Public Health Laboratory in Jamaica Plain, where students learned about vector-borne diseases and had the opportunity to examine mosquito specimens under the microscope.  Students also traveled to Worcester Family Health Center and learned about the role of community health centers in keeping populations healthy. There they met with Dr. Rick Sacra, an Ebola survivor who spent time in a biocontainment unit in Nebraska after contracting the disease in Liberia.  Students had a fun exercise in donning Ebola protection suits and learned the basics about pandemics and how to contain them.   

This is the fourth year that this free program has been offered.  Students from numerous Massachusetts high schools attend, and the list expands each year. Planning is already underway for next year’s program; any student who may be interested in Outbreak 2017 can contact Brian Miner at The Public Health Museum at

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