COVID-19 and Health Inequities: Seminar Series

Seminars take place weekly on Thursdays from 2:00 – 3:00pm ET between September 24 and October 22, 2020.

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The COVID-19 pandemic in the United States has disproportionately affected communities of color, people living in poverty, and other marginalized groups. Speakers will explore how COVID-19 exposure risk, the quality of COVID-19-specific medical care, and social determinants of health contribute to disparate trends in COVID-19 infection and mortality seen in the United States. Speakers will be asked to comment on the major public health needs, such as data collection and studies performed, that are required to support a more equitable pandemic response.

After attending this seminar series, participants will be able to:

  • Describe major patterns of health disparities throughout the COVID-19 pandemic in the United States
  • Identify key drivers of COVID-19-related health disparities
  • List three limitations of publicly available COVID-19 datasets for studying health inequities
  • Describe how public health researchers can support a more equitable pandemic response

Schedule of speakers:

  • 9/24/20: Bonnielin Swenor, Director of the Johns Hopkins Disability Health Research Center and Associate Professor of Ophthalmology at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health
  • 10/1/20: Jarvis Chen, Research Scientist for the Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences at the Harvard T.H. Chan School Of Public Health
  • 10/8/20: Kirsten Bibbins-Domingo, Professor and Chair of the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics at the UCSF School of Medicine
  • 10/15/20: Tanjala Purnell, Assistant Professor of Cardiovascular Disease and Clinical Epidemiology at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health
  • 10/22/20: Joseph Lewnard, Assistant Professor of Epidemiology at the UC Berkeley School of Public Health; and Max Cuevas, CEO of the Federally Qualified Health Center Clinica de Salud del Valle de Salinas


Seminar Recordings

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SARS-CoV-2 Infection Among California Farmworkers: Monterey County

10/22/20: Dr. Lewnard is an Assistant Professor of Epidemiology at the School of Public Health at the UC Berkeley. He studies the transmission dynamics of infectious disease agents and the effectiveness of interventions such as vaccination. He uses mathematical and statistical modeling and collaborates closely with investigators leading field studies and disease surveillance.
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Race, Racism, and Health Disparities in COVID-19

10/15/20: Dr. Tanjala Purnell is an epidemiologist and health services researcher with over a decade of research experience related to identifying and addressing patient/family, healthcare system, and community factors influencing health and healthcare disparities for adults with cardiovascular disease risk factors, including hypertension, chronic kidney disease, and diabetes.
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The Tale of Two Californias: “Averages Are No Consolation to Those Who Have Been Left Behind”

10/8/20: Dr. Bibbins-Domingo is a general internist, cardiovascular disease epidemiologist, and a national leader in prevention and interventions to address health disparities. She is an NIH-funded researcher who uses observational studies, pragmatic trials, and simulation modeling to examine effective clinical, public health, and policy interventions aimed at prevention.
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Tracking the Unequal Burden of COVID-19 in the United States

10/1/20: Dr. Jarvis Chen is a social epidemiologist whose research focuses on social inequalities in health, and especially racial/ethnic and socioeconomic disparities in cancer outcomes. As a methodologist, Dr. Chen’s interests include the development of methods for geospatial and spatiotemporal analysis, disease mapping, handling missing data, and latent variable analysis.
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COVID-19 and Disability: An Unequal Response

9/24/20: Dr. Swenor is an epidemiologist and Director of the newly established Johns Hopkins Disability Health Research Center, which aims to address health disparities among people with all types of disabilities. This Center connects researchers and stakeholders focused on maximizing health, equity, and participation of people with disabilities.
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