2022 rolled off the back of some challenging years due to the global pandemic. However, SSPH+ emerged from this time equipped with many invaluable lessons learned and silver linings that came out from its scientific community. Firstly, the pandemic raised awareness about the importance of public health sciences and particularly highlighted the unique role of SSPH+ and its substantial virtual network of public health experts in providing expert knowledge, skills and insights to public health. Moreover, it emphasized the value of rapid responses to changing public health climates which mobilized our network to find efficient ways to effectively share information and resources, allowing for quicker and more effective responses to circumstances. Equally, the pandemic brought the SSPH+ community together, arguably closer than ever, with a united front and a shared appreciation for excellent collaborative practices and knowledge sharing towards common goals. Notably, we successfully capitalized on the use of digital tools for teaching, events and discussion purposes. Combining these outcomes, SSPH+ has in many ways lived up to its vision to unite the national multi-disciplinary public health experts as a fast acting, open minded community that is ready to support federal and cantonal authorities in their difficult task of steering responses to the pandemic. Not to mention that, through this time, a new found appreciation for the faces behind the public health sciences community of young scientists and experts in public health sciences has been realized and opportunities to connect at in-person events such as the SSPH+ Faculty Meeting, the Lugano Summer School and the Swiss Public Health Conference was a welcome chance to further build the bridges between individuals and constituencies associated with the SSPH+ network. SSPH+ continues to contribute to better public health in all respects, even as the pandemic subsides and ‘normal’ life catches up with us again.
Nino Künzli, Luca Crivelli and Antoine Flahault
Sandra Nocera, Jorgen Bauwens, Ann Walser, Emily Reeves and Ursula Erni