Press Room

ASTHO President Dr. Nirav Shah Represents Public Health Community at White House Appreciation Event

ARLINGTON, VA (Nov. 22, 2021)—Today, the White House organized a Public Health Community Appreciation Town Hall to express gratitude to the entire public health community for their tireless efforts during the COVID-19 pandemic. The White House COVID-19 Response Team, HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra, CDC Director Rochelle Walensky, and others were in attendance. Speakers discussed a variety of topics including public health infrastructure, workforce, and preparing for the next pandemic.

ASTHO President Nirav Shah, MD, was an invited speaker and gave brief remarks of appreciation for the entire public health workforce:

"Today, I'd like to thank each of you for your extraordinary efforts over this time. The long nights, early mornings. At each point in the pandemic, we thought we were stretched to our maximum, but when the situation demanded it, we found ways to stretch even further. And we continue to do so: as some discuss learning to live with COVID, public health keeps working to prevent more people from dying.

"It hasn't been easy, though no work worth doing is. But we've kept doing it. Here's what's important: when our cities, states, territories, and country needed public health, we were there. This is public health’s ethos. We do hard things, and we do them in service of others. And there is no other field in which I would rather be,” said Nirav Shah, MD, ASTHO president and director of the Maine CDC."

###

ASTHO is the national nonprofit organization representing the public health agencies of the United States, the U.S. territories and Freely Associated States, and Washington, D.C., as well as the more than 100,000 public health professionals these agencies employ. ASTHO members, the chief health officials of these jurisdictions, are dedicated to formulating and influencing sound public health policy and to ensuring excellence in public health practice.