Opinion: 5 most widely read First Opinion essays of 2021

In the second turbulent year defined by a global pandemic, 2021 provided an abundance of topics for authors seeking to right wrongs, offer direction, make the world a better place, and sometimes just to tell a story. STAT published nearly 600 First Opinion essays this year, written by more than 750 authors from the biopharmaceutical industry, health care, academia, government, and private life in the United States and beyond.

It’s no surprise that many of the essays focused on Covid-19 and responses to the pandemic. But First Opinion authors also tackled other issues, like lessons learned — and forgotten — from the horrific epidemics of the U.S. Civil War; the ongoing overdose crisis; the hazard of stifling biopharma mergers; the Food and Drug Administration’s controversial approval of Aduhelm for early-stage Alzheimer’s disease; living through deep despair during and after pregnancy; the “diagnosis” of excited delirium; burnout among health care workers; and much, much more.

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