"Enough is enough." Former Surgeon General C. Everett Koop growled those words as he criticized the tobacco industry in 1989. He lit a fire for prevention that inspired public health action and awareness. His leadership helped define the vital role of the Surgeon General in educating the public and protecting public health. The impact he had during his tenure made the Surgeon General a household name and a trusted voice.
Now, as we work to combat the Ebola virus at home and abroad, Americans are looking for information and wondering: where is that trusted voice on matters of public health? The answer, unfortunately, is mired in the partisan obstructionism that has ground Washington to a halt.