‘Silent Pandemic’: Evidence-Based Environmental and Public Health Practices to Respond to the COVID-19 Crisis

London, UK: IntechOpen (2021)
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Given the unprecedented novel nature and scale of coronavirus and the global nature of this public health crisis, which upended many public/environmental research norms almost overnight. However, with further waves of the virus expected and more pandemics anticipated. The COVID-19 pandemic of 2020 opened our eyes to the ever-changing conditions and uncertainty that exists in our world today, particularly with regards to environmental and public health practices disruption. This paper explores environmental and public health evidence-based practices toward responding to Covid-19. A literature review tried to do a deep dive through the use of various search engines such as Mendeley, Research Gate, CAB Abstract, Google Scholar, Summon, PubMed, Scopus, Hinari, Dimension, OARE Abstract, SSRN, Academia search strategy toward retrieving research publications, “gray literature” as well as reports from expert working groups. To achieve enhanced population health, it is recommended to adopt widespread evidence-based strategies, particularly in this uncertain time. As only together can evidence-informed decision-making (EIDM) can become a reality which include effective policies and practices, transparency and accountability of decisions, and equity outcomes; these are all more relevant in resource-constrained contexts, such as Nigeria. Effective and ethical EIDM though requires the production as well as use of high-quality evidence that are timely, appropriate and structured. One way to do so is through co-production. Co-production (or co-creation or co-design) of environmental/public health evidence considered as a key tool for addressing complex global crises such as the high risk of severe COVID-19 in different nations. A significant evidence-based component of environmental/public health (EBEPH) consist of decisions making based on best accessible, evidence that is peer-reviewed; using data as well as systematic information systems; community engagement in policy-making; conducting sound evaluation; do a thorough program-planning frameworks; as well as disseminating what is being learned. As researchers, scientists, statisticians, journal editors, practitioners, as well as decision makers strive to improve population health, having a natural tendency toward scrutinizing the scientific literature aimed at novel research findings serving as the foundation for intervention as well as prevention programs. The main inspiration behind conducting research ought to be toward stimulating and collaborating appropriately on public/environmental health action. Hence, there is need for a “Plan B” of effective behavioral, environmental, social as well as systems interventions (BESSI) toward reducing transmission.


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