Cobra Event Essay: What are the similarities between epidemiology and forensics?

Essay by THE EnigmaHigh School, 10th gradeA-, July 2007

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Epidemiology is the study of epidemics of disease. An epidemiologist, searches for the source of the disease in an epidemic, determines a preventive measure for the disease, and then finally searches for a cure. Forensics, while it is a completely different field, it too is a profession that tries to backtrack and scientifically find the answer in an investigation. However, forensics is the science of looking at physical evidence to analyze a crime and identify its perpetrator. The book Cobra Event is about a psychopath who unleashes a deadly airborne brain virus on New York as Alice Austin, an epidemiologist for the C.D.C., tries to stop the disease and locate the killer. So how are epidemiology and forensics similar?Epidemiology and forensics are two professions utilized by the federal government. Epidemiology is managed under the C.D.C. (Centers for Disease Control.) Forensics is controlled by federal law enforcement such as the FBI as well as local law enforcement.

Although, the C.D.C. is less renown as the FBI as well as less funded, the epidemiology sector is greatly respected and relied upon. In order to collect evidence to prove the presence of an epidemic, epidemiologists must file requests for permission to gather this evidence under the C.D.C. Just as epidemiologists do, forensic scientists must first get their warrants to gather evidence in criminal cases. In the book Cobra Event, Alice's superiors in the C.D.C are infected and killed by the cobra virus and she had to resort to the FBI because it had become a subject of national security. Therefore, the FBI kept the case low profile, because "It is CDC policy", just as it is in the FBI, "to avoid drawing attention to themselves, and to refrain from doing anything that might create a climate of fear in the public"...