Lesson Plan: For Teachers: For Teachers - TB Today: Developing a Public Health Plan
Ask students: Did you know that you need certain vaccinations to be allowed to attend school? Why do you think this is? What is "public health"? Who needs to be involved in solving a public health problem?
Give students three minutes to list the participants (individuals, organizations, government bodies, and so on) they think would be needed or helpful in an effective public health plan. Have them share their lists in small groups and add classmates' ideas to their original lists.
Outline the Opportunity
Direct students to the topic Tuberculosis: Old Disease, Continuing Threat on the CBC Digital Archives website. Have them view the clips "The science of tuberculosis", "The Christmas Seal: get your free x-ray!", "Seeking treatment, losing family", "TB plagues northern natives", "On the verge of a new vaccine", "Patients walk out on TB treatment" and "Get a chest X-ray for TB, win a prize."
Tell students to imagine that Parliament is prepared to allocate a sizeable amount of money for an all-out attack on TB in Canada today. Various groups both within and outside government (for example, doctors, nurses, social workers, groups involved in supporting homeless or First Nations or new Canadian populations, schools, makers of various drug therapies, charitable organizations, and various levels of government involved in public health and research) will present comprehensive plans to a parliamentary committee. Have groups of students choose a group to represent, and prepare and present a plan from that group's viewpoint. Each plan should be presented orally with strong visual aids and include the following components: Rationale, Achievement Targets, Key Actions, Participants, and Timeline.
Revisit and Reflect
Have students set up a table to guide note-taking on one another's presentations, with columns for Presenters' Names, Original Idea, Unrealistic Idea, and Questions. Following the presentations, lead a class discussion. Encourage students to identify common challenges in public policy, such as reaching agreement on what measures will be effective and balancing individual rights with the needs of the society as a whole.
Expand the discussion to include ongoing, recent, and potential threats to public health, such as HIV/AIDS, SARS, West Nile virus, influenza, and refusal of vaccinations. Students may also research killer diseases in the developing world, such as measles, pneumonia, and malaria, and the re-emergence of malaria in North America in recent years. What measures do students think would be most effective in controlling and eradicating these devastating diseases?