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The Covid-19 pandemic has been the most devastating natural event the world has experienced in the last century. Millions have been stricken, many with lasting debilitating effects; more than 7 million have died around the globe; millions more are out of work, scrambling for basic resources; companies and businesses across the country have failed; social and racial inequities have been brought to the surface and amplified; and the global economy has plummeted. And yet, as horrifying as the Covid-19 pandemic has been, we must realize that it is not actually “the Big One”—the pandemic prospect that haunts the nightmares of epidemiologists and public health officials everywhere, a catastrophe with the potential to alter life across the world on every meaningful level—unless we are properly prepared to deal with it.
In The Big One, founding director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy Dr. Michael T. Osterholm and acclaimed author Mark Olshaker examine the lessons of past pandemics, show how the United States and other countries failed to apply those lessons and the emerging science in confronting Covid-19, and look to the future, projecting what the next pandemics might look like and the strategies to mitigate them.
The Big One is a comprehensive, compelling, and much-needed wake-up call and reality check from a disease detective who has been on the front lines of outbreak investigations, was one of the first to call Covid-19 a pandemic, and has been consistently correct and accurate about the impact of coronaviruses. The Big One strips away the myths, misinformation, and wishful thinking, such as our ability to prevent a deadly pandemic spread through the air. This book, instead, provides a prescription to survive such a cataclysm with our lives and social order intact. Fail to act, and the Big One could make the devastation of Covid-19 pale in comparison.
This is a book about virus versus humanity, hubris versus humility, lofty vision versus dreams that can turn into nightmares, and what we can do in an ideal world versus the reality of what we must do in the one we all live in.
- On Sale
- Feb 4, 2025
- Page Count
- 336 pages
- Little Brown Spark