1 The occupation that is equal in importance to policing in maintenance of public safety. Firefighters are at high risk of occupational death and injury and some risk of chronic respiratory disease from smoke inhalation.
2 (jargon) The ad hoc treatment of the consequences of exposure to a health hazard that would be better controlled by eliminating or reducing the health hazard, rather than waiting for it to cause adverse effects. An example is treatment of individual cases of a childhood infectious disease preventable by immunization, rather than immunizing all susceptible children in the population to prevent the disease from occurring in the first place.
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