Conversations about COVID-19

Pitt Public Health brings together a variety of experts to have a conversation about different aspects of the COVID-19 pandemic and address questions from seminar attendees. The goal of the seminar series is to provide our school community, alumni, and the public with credible information about the virus and the associated health impacts. 

View past sessions below and stay tuned for future sessions. 

Recent Session Summaries & Recordings

Biden coronavirus task force appointee Michael Osterholm discusses "The COVID Pandemic: The Evolving Reality" (video)

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In a special IDM Seminar, Michael T. Osterholm answers questions regarding the epidemiology of SARS-CoV-2 infection, public health strategies to reduce transmission, and thoughts on how the world will likely look one year from now. Osterholm was recently appointed to President-elect Biden's coronavirus task force and directs the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota.  

Disinformation & Misinformation: Politics, Pandemics & Public Health

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In the final fall session of Conversations about COVID-19 seminar series, Jaime Sidani and Michael Colaresi join BCHS doctoral student Beth Hoffman to discuss ways that public health can address dis/misinformation in the era of COVID-19, with a particular focus on implications for COVID-19 vaccine acceptance.  

CDC NIOSH's Response to PPE Challenges During COVID-19

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As part of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)'s National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), the National Personal Protective Technology Laboratory (NPPTL) has responded ot the unique personal protective equipment (PPE) challenges that have arisen during COVID-19. This presentation, with Maryann D'Alessandro, PhD, and John Powers, both of the NPPTL, provides an overview of their response to COVID-19 and effort... 

Pennsylvania State Response to COVID-19

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Wendy Braund, COVID-19 response director, Pennsylvania Department of Health, leads a conversation about the Pennsylvania Department of Health response to COVID-19, addressing the current situation and containment and mitigation efforts.   

COVID-19 & Health Disparities

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As part of the Conversations about COVID-19 seminar series, EPI doctoral candidate Chantele Mitchell Miland , and Pitt's director of health sciences diversity, equity, and inclusion, Mario Browne (BCHS '05), discuss COVID-19 and health disparities.  

Conversations about COVID-19

 

COVID-19 News Headlines

The pandemic is rewriting the rules of science. But at what cost? Burke weighs in 

The pandemic is rewriting the rules of science. But at what cost? Burke weighs in

WASHINGTON POST - The pandemic has upended norms of the scientific process, from the way studies are funded through the publication of findings. As a result, modelers, like other scientists, have been scrambling to fund and ramp up their operations. The upshot is a lack of agility that has always h... (10/22/2020)

Achieving COVID-19 herd immunity through infection is dangerous, deadly, and might not even work 

Achieving COVID-19 herd immunity through infection is dangerous, deadly, and might not even work

THE CONVERSATION - White House advisers offer a “natural” approach to herd immunity as a way to reduce the need for public health control measures. BCHS chair Steven Albert asserts that this infection-based approach would almost certainly fail. Recklessly dropping social distancing and mask-wearing... (10/29/2020)

Gilead’s Covid drug win could clog pipeline for other treatments 

Gilead’s Covid drug win could clog pipeline for other treatments

BLOOMBERG LAW - The future of Covid-19 treatment research is cloudier after the FDA approved Gilead Sciences Inc.'s remdesivir. The approval solidifies the standard of care for hospitalized virus patients in the U.S. Shortages of remdesivir could slow down the development of other new Covid-19 drug... (10/27/2020)

Gellad criticizes how Science gets political as Trump touts experimental coronavirus drugs 

Gellad criticizes how Science gets political as Trump touts experimental coronavirus drugs

AXIOS - "We have an emergency use authorization that I want to get signed immediately," Trump said in a video Thursday. "The problem is every therapy for coronavirus has become politicized—every single therapy, and that's the last thing you want in a pandemic, so this is just next in line," said th... (10/13/2020)

'I won't be used as a guinea pig for white people' - Black Pittsburghers think twice about vaccine trials 

'I won't be used as a guinea pig for white people' - Black Pittsburghers think twice about vaccine trials

NEW YORK TIMES - Mistrust of vaccines runs deep in African-American communities. Against formidable odds, Fr. Paul Abernathy and his teams are trying to convince residents fo Pittsburgh's Black neighborhoods to volunteer for trials testing a COVID-19 shot. “The community health deputies have been i... (10/07/2020)

Pennsylvania State Response to COVID-19 

Pennsylvania State Response to COVID-19

Wendy Braund, COVID-19 response director, Pennsylvania Department of Health, leads a conversation about the Pennsylvania Department of Health response to COVID-19, addressing the current situation and containment and mitigation efforts.  (11/06/2020)

Gellad weighs in on implications of latest COVID-19 treatment and vaccine options  

Gellad weighs in on implications of latest COVID-19 treatment and vaccine options

NEW YORK TIMES - “It’s kind of the best times for these therapies to enter, because they can have an impact,” said HPM's Walid F. Gellad, who leads Pitt's Center for Pharmaceutical Policy and Prescribing. “It’s also the worst time because we don’t have enough doses, and it’s going to add to the bac... (11/10/2020)

Why do COVID death rates seem to be falling? Derek Angus weighs in.  

Why do COVID death rates seem to be falling? Derek Angus weighs in.

NATURE - Critical-care physician Derek Angus (BCHS ’92) of the University of Pittsburgh says that his hospital’s statistics team also saw reductions over time. “Without question, we’ve noticed a drop in mortality,” says Angus. “All things being equal, patients have a better chance of getting out ... (11/11/2020)
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