Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

The Communicable Disease Center was formed in 1946 by Dr. Joseph W. Mountin, a “visionary public health leader.”1 As a branch of the Public Health Service (PHS) located in Atlanta, Georgia, the CDC originally focused primarily on eradicating malaria. By 1950 they had expanded to become a center for disease surveillance through the solution of the Salk vaccine contamination issue in 1955 and the tracing of the influenza epidemic in 1957.2

In the decade between 1957 and 1967, the CDC grew by acquiring new divisions: the venereal disease program, the tuberculosis program, immunizations program, the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, the foreign quarantine service, an established nutrition program, and the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health. These changes led to a new name in 1970: The Center for Disease Control.3

The CDC had a key role in the 15 year battle to globally eliminate Small Pox. This was achieved in 1977, which is considered “one of the greatest triumphs of public health.”4 By the 1980's they were focusing on AIDS as another global health issue.

In 1981, the CDC was extensively reorganized and their name was changed to Centers for Disease Control. More than a decade later in 1992, their name and mission expanded to include “and Prevention.” Still known as the CDC, The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention began to be significant for the playground industry. As the “nation's premier health promotion, prevention, and preparedness agency,” they conduct research and investigations to improve people's daily lives as well as respond actively to health emergencies.5

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has researched, compiled, and published a Fact Sheet on Playground Injuries.6 They also have a listing of articles on playgrounds and playground issues on their website. In this way they assist the playground industry in raising public awareness with the goal to prevent injuries and deaths.

In 2011, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention published "School Health Guidelines to Promote Healthy Eating and Physical Activity" that contained nine guidelines, each accompanied with a set of implementation strategies, to help schools work towards creating environments that support healthy eating and regular physical activity.7

  • 1. “Historical Perspectives History of CDC.” Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. June 28, 1996. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. < http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/00042732.htm > 27 Jan. 2011.
  • 2. Ibid.
  • 3. Ibid.
  • 4. Ibid.
  • 5. “Our History – Our Story.” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. < http://www.cdc.gov/about/history/ourstory.htm > 27 Jan. 2011.
  • 6. “Playground Injuries: Fact Sheet.” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. < http://www.cdc.gov/HomeandRecreationalSafety/Playground-Injuries/playgroundinjuries > 3 Aug. 2010.
  • 7. "School Health Guidelines to Promote Healthy Eating and Physical Activity." Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. < http://www.cdc.gov/healthyyouth/npao/strategies.htm > 23 Sep. 2011.