Health and medicine/Diseases and disorders/Infectious diseases/Microbial infections/Viral infections/Herpes simplex
When you specialize in sexually transmitted infections, people tend to reach out to you. At least, that’s been Christine Johnston’s experience, as a physician and researcher studying genital herpes based at the University of Washington. Prior to starting her fellowship with the AAAS Leshner Leadership Institute for Public Engagement with Science, her public engagement was mostly reactive, interacting with patients and people concerned they might have genital herpes, and responding to requests for media interviews. She found that patient support group conversations often stimulated research questions about the stigma associated with herpes, questions that wouldn’t have arisen just in the clinical setting, even though the stigma is very connected to clinical impacts.