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 Letters to the Editor

Johns Hopkins Public Health, Fall 2004
Courtesy: CDC.

Cooking with Plastic

I read your reply to the letter about the freezing water bottles and toxins myth [“Dioxin Hoax,” Fall 2004], but what about the plastic plate covers designed for the microwave? Do they also pose a hazard?
Jeanine Dinsmore
Elk Grove, California

Thank you for setting the record straight that freezing water in plastic bottles is OK. As for heating things in plastic, I was a little less clear. What about using plastic wrap when you microwave something? It seems that that is probably not a good idea. Is that correct? Please advise.
Larry Newman
New York, New York

Editor’s Note: Our in-house expert Rolf Halden, PhD, PE, assistant professor of Environmental Health Sciences, addresses cooking with plastic in an article

A Major Issue
Regarding undergraduate public health majors at Hopkins, the Public Health Studies program at Arts and Sciences was actually established in 1974, when I was a freshman. I was the first enrollee.
David E. Lilienfeld, MD, MPH, MSEngin, MBA
Foster City, California

Where There’s a Will…
Dr. Sommer’s reference to voluntary community ratings and the suggestion that the federal government pay for the uninsured [“Affordable Health,” Fall 2004] misses obstacles more central to achieving universal care.
     Ideological beliefs—such as self-reliance, the resistance to inclusiveness and the reluctance to accept anything other than the free market—are hindering implementation of health coverage for all our citizens. These values seem to be more important than the health of the population.
     Changing ingrained cultural norms is much more difficult than devising a funding technique. Funding and implementation are seldom obstacles when those in power are committed to a goal that they think is worthy.
Dave Goldman, MSW
Ann Arbor, Michigan

First Class Scholarship
As this issue of Johns Hopkins Public Health The Sommer Scholars Medallionmagazine went to press, final selections were being made for the first cadre of Sommer Scholars. Later in the spring, you will be able to read about this impressive group of master of public health and doctoral students.
Nigerian Kudos
I just want to commend you for a beautiful, informative and interesting magazine and yet very academic in every sense... Well done. And keep the flag flying.
Dr. Akin Fajola 
Dept. of Preventive Medicine
Faculty of Public Health
University College Hospital
Ibadan, Nigeria


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