Boonshoft School of Medicine sponsors COVID-19 vaccine task force virtual symposium


FAIRBORN — The Wright State University Boonshoft School of Medicine (BSOM) COVID-19 vaccine task force is hosting a free virtual symposium on COVID-19 vaccines. The symposium will take place Tuesday, Jan. 19 from 1- 3 p.m, and is for the purpose of sharing information about vaccine best practices with the Dayton-area medical community.

Gov. Mike DeWine is scheduled to speak at the event, as is Dayton mayor Nan Whaley. The BSOM task force will broach topics including COVID-19 virology and management updates, information about the vaccines, misconceptions, and unanswered questions, and distribution of the vaccines, according to a release. Each topic will be led by medical professionals from BSOM or one of the Dayton-area hospital systems. BSOM Dean Valerie Weber, M.D. will also speak.

“This is a scary time for people, and health care workers need to recognize that while information seems accessible, often times it’s contrasting and difficult for patients to understand,” said Dr. We’am Hussain, an internal medicine resident with BSOM.

Hussain and her sister, Anam Hussain, M.B.A., a third-year medical student at BSOM, organized the vaccine task force, with the assistance of Dr. Glen Solomon, chair of the BSOM Department Internal Medicine and Neurology.

“By first sharing information with health care professionals, we believe that information will then trickle down from provider to patient,” Anam Hussain said.

The COVID-19 vaccine task force at Wright State is comprised of members of the BSOM community, supported by the BSOM Department of Internal Medicine and Neurology. It includes members of BSOM faculty, residents, and students across multiple specialty areas.

“The goal of this symposium is to provide clinicians with the tools to understand the COVID-19 vaccines, so that they can educate themselves, their patients, and the public. We seek to make clinicians and the public comfortable in their decisions regarding COVID-19 vaccination,” Solomon said.

Along with the Hussains, members include Solomon, professor and chair of internal medicine and neurology; Cynthia Sheppard Solomon, B.S. pharm, RPh, FASCP, clinical assistant professor with internal medicine and neurology; Dr. Steven Burdette, division director of infectious disease and professor of internal medicine; Dr. Jonathan Miller, psychiatry resident physician; and Dr. H. Bradford Hawley, professor emeritus with BSOM internal medicine, and past president of the Infectious Diseases Society of Ohio.

Along with sharing information about the vaccines, the task force is also focused on helping providers discuss the vaccines with their patients.

“We see two aspects to communicating with patients,” We’am Hussain said. “First is understanding their concerns, and second is having the appropriate knowledge to share.”

The team suggests providers use motivational interviewing as a way to discuss the vaccines with patients.

“Oftentimes the way we present information to our patients is just as important as what we are saying,” Anam Hussain shared.

These techniques and others will be discussed during the symposium.

“Because the methods of development of these vaccines are unique, and because the vaccines are available through Emergency Use Approval before full FDA approval occurs, clinicians may have gaps in their understanding as they strive to inform patients,” said Cynthia Sheppard Solomon. “This symposium is an opportunity for our team to provide information. We look forward to reaching out to Dayton-area clinicians, as well as to specific groups of consumers in the weeks ahead.”

The task force is motivated to help clinicians partner with their patients to get one of the vaccines, help slow the spread of COVID-19, and help the community be healthy and safe.

“Ultimately the vaccines are only beneficial when they are appropriately distributed and used, this is our vision for the Dayton community,” We’am Hussain added.

For more information about this free virtual event please contact [email protected].

Staff report

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