The National Academies: What You Need To Know About Infectious Disease

The National Academies

What You Need To Know About Infectious Disease

Emerging Infections: Microbial Threats to Health in the United States (1992)

This volume presents a historical perspective on infectious disease and discusses how "new" diseases, such as HIV/AIDS, arise and how "old" diseases, such as tuberculosis, resurge. The book highlights risk factors for the emergence of microbial threats to health, warns against complacency in public health, and promotes early prevention as a cost-effective and crucial strategy for maintaining public health in the United States and worldwide.

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What do you know about infectious disease?

True or False: Thimerosal, a mercury-containing preservative that was used in some vaccines and other products, has been shown to present a risk to human health.

  • Sorry, that’s incorrect.

    The use of thimerosal has been an object of controversy, with some arguing that the substance caused autism in children. However, extensive independent research has presented no convincing evidence of harm associated with the low levels of thimerosal previously present in vaccines.

  • Correct!

    The use of thimerosal has been an object of controversy, with some arguing that the substance caused autism in children. However, extensive independent research has presented no convincing evidence of harm associated with the low levels of thimerosal previously present in vaccines.