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Public health then and now; celebrating 50 years of MMWR at CDC
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Public health then and now; celebrating 50 years of MMWR at CDC
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  • Alternative Title:
    Celebrating 50 years of MMWR at CDC
  • Description:
    "This supplement of MMWR celebrates the 50th anniversary of CDC's first publication of MMWR on January 13, 1961. MMWR was not new in 1961, but it was new to CDC, an agency that itself had been founded only 15 years earlier, in 1946. The longer history of MMWR traces back to July 13, 1878, when the first predecessor of MMWR, called simply The Bulletin of the Public Health, was inaugurated. The Bulletin was established in accordance with the first National Quarantine Act, passed by Congress 2 months earlier. The Act ordered the Surgeon General of the U.S. Marine-Hospital Service to begin publishing abstracted disease reports collected from U.S. consuls in foreign lands to alert U.S. quarantine officials about what diseases could be expected among passengers arriving on steamships. In the 83 years from 1878 to 1961, MMWR went through several incarnations. By 1952, the publication had its current name and was being published by the National Office of Vital Statistics, an agency within the U.S. Department of Health, Education and Welfare. In 1960, CDC's renowned chief of epidemiology, Alexander D. Langmuir, decided that MMWR should be transferred to CDC (then known as the Communicable Disease Center). After much discussion, and as Langmuir later said in an interview, 'all sorts of pulling out teeth by the roots without anesthesia and all kinds of internal frictions,' in 1960, MMWR was transferred to CDC." -p. 2
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