Health and Healthcare Systems

A New York doctor reports from the front line: this week's World Vs Virus podcast

Cyclists ride through a nearly empty Times Square in Manhattan during the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak in New York City, New York, U.S., March 31, 2020. REUTERS/Brendan Mcdermid - HP1EG3V18JJ14

"It's just a different place," doctor and author Matt McCarthy says of New York. Image: REUTERS/Brendan Mcdermid

Robin Pomeroy
Podcast Editor, World Economic Forum
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  • Superbugs author Matt McCarthy is a frontline doctor in New York City.
  • Havard Medical School experts explain the importance of testing.
  • Get survival tips from a former submariner.
  • Subscribe to World Vs Virus on Apple or Spotify to get it every week.

Matt McCarthy wrote a bestselling book, Superbugs, about the threat posed by antibiotic-resistant bacteria. Now this New York doctor is fighting on the front line against the COVID-19 virus which poses a similar threat.

You can hear what it's like to live and work as a doctor in a city at the US epicentre for the disease in this week's World Vs Virus podcast.


Despite the workload and the risks, McCarthy said it was pride in his work and admiration for his colleagues that was keeping him going: "I don't wake up every day feeling frustrated or feeling angry. I'm just fully engaged and focused and really just proud to be part of this community."

The podcast is available on Apple Podcasts as part of its Essential Listening collection. The podcast is also available on Spotify and Libsyn.


Other guests this week:

David Duong and Todd Pollack of Harvard Medical School talk about COVID-19 testing strategies and how Vietnam seems to have got it right.

Former US Navy submariner John Rafferty shares how to survive for weeks on end couped up in a confined space with the same people.

Articles discussed in the podcast:

To learn more about this week's guests:

For an excerpt of Matt McCarthy's book Superbugs (as highlighted by the World Economic Forum Book Club), read here: Superbugs, coronavirus - and what it will take to stop the next pandemic.

For additional ways to survive a lockdown, read here: Here’s what astronauts and submariners say about coping with self-isolation.

For more on testing strategies, read here: To test or not to test? Two experts explain COVID-19 testing.

To join the World Economic Forum Book Club:
Our monthly book club features books from top authors each month, such as Yuval Noah Harari and Melinda Gates, offering members the unique opportunity to ask those authors questions about their work. The book club has amassed more than 400,000 followers across a range of social media platforms and has just celebrated its second birthday. Join here.

To subscribe to the podcast:

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