Michael T. Osterholm, PhD, MPH is an epidemiologist and Director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy (CIDRAP) at The University of Minnesota.
One of the most sought-out experts on the pandemic, and a member of the COVID-19 Transition Advisory Board set up by Joe Biden, Dr. Osterholm has accurately predicted the trajectory of the novel virus. In this 30-minute episode, Mike Sacopulos interviews Dr. Osterholm on his perspective of the next three months and what leaders in health systems will encounter, the status on the highly mutated variant strains already being seen in other countries, and efficacy of the existing vaccines on the variant strains. He also explains the “moon shot” of the COVID-19 vaccine development, field trials, approval process through the FDA, and manufacturing, all happening simultaneously.
Physician leaders need to consider the knowledge, attitudes, and beliefs of physicians and healthcare workers as they make suggestions to slow the transmission of the virus in our communities. Ongoing prevention and vaccines, including reassurance that no short cuts or skipped steps were taken in the of “Project Warp Speed” is crucial messaging to combat the 30%-40% of healthcare workers hesitant to be vaccinated.
Lastly, Osterholm discusses the “Fauci Effect” and the spike in interest in medical school and health careers in public health and epidemiology, inspired by front-line health workers.
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