Prevention is Superior to Treatment

The UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health is teaming up with the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services and other academic partners across North Carolina to understand how widespread cases of COVID-19 with mild or no symptoms are in the state and to monitor the prevalence of the disease over time.

“North Carolina’s actions to flatten the curve and fight COVID-19 are working. We know we need more testing of all types, and this research partnership will help us better understand the virus so we can keep our communities safe as we seek to ease restrictions,” said North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper.

The Gillings School’s role in the project developed as the result of ongoing work between the Chatham County Public Health Department, the Chatham Health Alliance and NCIPH. Launched by Gillings School alumnus and CCPHD Health Promotion and Policy Division Director Mike Zelek ’12 (M.P.H.) in 2018, the CCPHD worked with NCIPH to develop a rigorously sampled cohort of Chatham residents that could efficiently and effectively estimate a wide array of community issues at a population level in Chatham County.

“We have to focus our collective resources — across government, private and public sectors — to defeat this virus. Our research partners are integral to winning the fight,” said NCDHHS Secretary Dr. Mandy Cohen.

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