“Outbreak: The First Response,” a documentary on the nation’s first COVID-19 outbreak, is now available for streaming on Yahoo.com.
Produced by Soledad O’Brien Productions with support from the de Beaumont Foundation, “Outbreak” offers viewers a real-time, behind-the-scenes look at how the pandemic affected the Seattle/King County area, especially the most vulnerable communities. The crew had direct access to the county’s director of public health as the pandemic grew. The powerful story is told through the experiences of two families — one dealing with homelessness and the other with an elderly relative in a long-term care facility.
“Public health has been underfunded and ignored in this country for decades,” said executive producer Soledad O’Brien. “Yet during a crisis like this, it is public health workers who are on the frontlines educating the public about how to stay safe. We were able to follow their response to this crisis in real time and see how their efforts saved lives, particularly those of vulnerable communities.”
Brian C. Castrucci, DrPH, President and CEO of the de Beaumont Foundation and co-executive producer, said, “The de Beaumont Foundation was proud to partner with Soledad to tell this important story. The documentary shows how a community’s health is directly tied to conditions like housing, education, and employment — and how we’ll need to address stark inequities if we want to be prepared for the next crisis.”
The documentary premiered last month in prime time on all Hearst stations nationwide, as well as on “Matter of Fact with Soledad O’Brien.”