In 2016, the de Beaumont Foundation released its first documentary short, “Public Health & Politics: Examining the Surgeon General” (17:49). Don’t have time to watch the full video now? Watch the trailer (2:01).

As an official whose term overlaps presidential administrations, the Surgeon General has the rare ability to operate outside the constraints imposed on most presidential appointees. But Surgeons General can’t escape the fact that they work inside government, regardless of who controls the White House, and they experience a variety of direct and indirect pressures and even challenges to their independence. In evaluating the complexities of the role of the Surgeon General, the documentary illustrates how important it is to have a clear, unambiguous voice speaking on behalf of science and public health evidence – in effect, someone to anchor us to truth – in this mix.