The role of expertise, science in public policies in public health crisis

The role of expertise, science in public policies in public health crisis

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Dr. Donald Westerhausen Jr. and Dr. Richard Kovacs

Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb should be praised for his political courage in his veto of Senate Bill 5 earlier this year, and the Indiana General Assembly, which overturned the veto, should reconsider the consequences of its action.

SB 5 prevents a local health department from implementing orders more restrictive than those issued by the governor, unless such orders are approved by county or city elected officials. The impetus of the bill was to address perceived inequalities from business and religious interests pertaining to those orders during the ongoing pandemic.

However, this change is critical to the future, as well, because many experts believe another global pandemic is only years to decades away.

 Holcomb’s veto of SB 5 demonstrates his support and understanding of the role of expertise and science in developing and executing public policies during a public health emergency.

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