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Life After COVID — the New Normal?

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With support from: Lowell Institute
Date and time
Wednesday, August 18, 2021
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“After COVID” is hard to imagine, as is just how long it will take us—globally, nationally, regionally— to get there. The term “new normal” has already become old and overused, but what does it really mean? The truth is that we can’t provide any concrete answers to this complex question, but we can examine empirical patterns that are already observable. A panel including Dr. Michael Osterholm, White House advisor, epidemiologist and Director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota; Rachel Silverman, policy fellow Center for Global Development, and Dr. Amesh Adalja Johns Hopkins, Center for Global Health and Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security predict what might change fundamentally and what lessons about preparedness we will have learned. Politics in the Era of Global Pandemic— 2.0, is produced by Ford Hall Forum at Suffolk University, the Political Science & Legal Studies department at Suffolk University, and the GBH Forum Network. Guest speakers examine the issues at play in year two of the COVID-19 pandemic, from global infection rates to the havoc on the economy, our politics, and our trust in our governments. ### RESOURCES “[The Case for Investing in Public Health](https://www.euro.who.int/__data/assets/pdf_file/0009/278073/Case-Investing-Public-Health.pdf ) ”, by the European Health Organization, 2020. “[About Variants](https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/variants/variant.html) ” CDC, 08/06/202. “[‘Act now’ on global vaccines to stop more-dangerous variants, experts warn Biden](https://www.washingtonpost.com/health/2021/08/10/health-experts-demand-global-vaccines-pandemic/) ” By Dan Diamond and Yasmeen Abutaleb, The Washington Post, 08/10/2021.

Dr. Adalja is a Senior Scholar at the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security, an Adjunct Assistant Professor at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, and an Affiliate of the Johns Hopkins Center for Global Health. His work is focused on emerging infectious disease, pandemic preparedness, and biosecurity. Dr. Adalja has served on US government panels tasked with developing guidelines for the treatment of plague, botulism, and anthrax in mass casualty settings and for the system of care for infectious disease emergencies. He also served as an external advisor to the New York City Health + Hospitals Emergency Management Highly Infectious Disease training program and on a US Federal Emergency Management Agency working group on nuclear disaster recovery. He is a spokesperson for the Infectious Diseases Society of America; he previously served on their public health and diagnostics committees and their precision medicine working group. Dr. Adalja is a member of the American College of Emergency Physicians Pennsylvania Chapter’s EMS & Terrorism and Disaster Preparedness Committee as well as the Allegheny County Medical Reserve Corps. He was formerly a member of the National Quality Forum Infectious Disease Standing Committee, where he currently serves on the Primary Care and Chronic Illness Standing Committee, and the US Department of Health and Human Services National Disaster Medical System, with which he was deployed to Haiti after the 2010 earthquake and was also selected for their mobile acute care strike team. Dr. Adalja’s expertise is frequently sought by international and national media. During the COVID-19 pandemic, Dr. Adalja has served as a member of the National Collegiate Athletic Association coronavirus advisory group; a consultant to various businesses, schools, and organizations; and an informal advisor to the International Monetary Fund. Dr. Adalja is an Associate Editor of the journal Health Security. He was a coeditor of the volume Global Catastrophic Biological Risks and a contributing author for the Handbook of Bioterrorism and Disaster Medicine, the Emergency Medicine CorePendium, Clinical Microbiology Made Ridiculously Simple, UpToDate’s section on biological terrorism, and a North Atlantic Treaty Organization volume on bioterrorism. He has also published in such journals as the New England Journal of Medicine, JAMA, Journal of Infectious Diseases, Clinical Infectious Diseases, Emerging Infectious Diseases, Annals of Emergency Medicine, and Health Security. Dr. Adalja is a Fellow of the Infectious Diseases Society of America, the American College of Physicians, and the American College of Emergency Physicians. He is a member of various medical societies, including the American Medical Association, the HIV Medicine Association, and the Society of Critical Care Medicine. He is a board-certified physician in internal medicine, emergency medicine, infectious diseases, and critical care medicine. Dr. Adalja completed 2 fellowships at the University of Pittsburgh—one in infectious diseases, for which he served as chief fellow, and one in critical care medicine. Prior to that he completed a combined residency in internal medicine and emergency medicine at Allegheny General Hospital in Pittsburgh, where he served as chief resident and as a member of the infection control committee. He was a Clinical Assistant Professor at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine from 2010 through 2017 and is currently an Adjunct Assistant Professor there. He is also an Adjunct Assistant Professor in the Department of Biological Sciences at Carnegie Mellon University. He received an MD from the American University of the Caribbean School of Medicine and a BS in industrial management from Carnegie Mellon University. Dr. Adalja is a native of Butler, Pennsylvania, and actively practices infectious disease, critical care, and emergency medicine in the Pittsburgh metropolitan area, where he was appointed to the City of Pittsburgh’s HIV Commission and the advisory group of AIDS Free Pittsburgh.
Dr. Osterholm has been an international leader on the critical concern regarding our preparedness for an influenza pandemic. His recent invited papers in the journals *Foreign Affairs*, *the New England Journal of Medicine*, and *Nature* detail the threat of an influenza pandemic and steps we must take to better prepare for that event. Dr. Osterholm has also been an international leader on the growing concern regarding the use of biological agents as catastrophic weapons targeting civilian populations. In that role, he served as a personal advisor to the late King Hussein of Jordan. Dr. Osterholm is director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy (CIDRAP), director of the NIH-supported Minnesota Center of Excellence for Influenza Research and Surveillance (MCEIRS) within CIDRAP, a professor in the Division of Environmental Health Sciences, and an adjunct professor in the Medical School, University of Minnesota. He is also a member of the Institute of Medicine (IOM) of the National Academy of Sciences. Dr. Osterholm provides a comprehensive and pointed review of America's current state of preparedness for a bioterrorism attack in his *New York Times* best-selling book, *Living Terrors: What America Needs to Know to Survive the Coming Bioterrorist Catastrophe*. The author of more than 300 papers and abstracts, including 20 book chapters, Dr. Osterholm is a frequently invited guest lecturer on the topic of epidemiology of infectious diseases. He serves on the editorial boards of five journals, including *Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology* and *Microbial Drug Resistance: Mechanisms, Epidemiology and Disease*, and he is a reviewer for 24 additional journals, including *the New England Journal of Medicine*, *the Journal of the American Medical Association*, and *Science*.
Eugene Daniels is a Playbook author and White House correspondent at POLITICO, with a focus on Vice President Kamala Harris, First Lady Dr. Jill Biden, the Second Gentleman and emerging power players in Washington.
Rachel Silverman is a policy fellow at the Center for Global Development, where she leads policy-oriented research on global health financing and incentive structures. Silverman’s current research focuses on the practical application of results-based financing; global health transitions; efficient global health procurement; innovation models for global health; priority-setting for UHC; alignment and impact in international funding for family planning; and strategies to strengthen evidence and accountability. Before joining CGD in 2011 she worked with the National Democratic Institute to support democracy and governance strengthening programs in Kosovo. She holds a master’s of philosophy with distinction in public health from the University of Cambridge, which she attended as a Gates Cambridge Scholar. She also holds a BA with distinction in international relations and economics from Stanford University.

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