ASN is partnering with the National Academy of Medicine to kick off Kidney Week with a special opening plenary on Thursday, November 3, on countering the threat of future pandemics.
An internationally recognized expert on neglected tropical diseases and vaccine development will present the keynote address on “Preventing the Next Pandemic.” The speaker will be Peter J. Hotez, MD, PhD, dean of the National School of Tropical Medicine and professor of pediatrics and molecular virology and microbiology at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, TX.
Dr. Hotez is also the co-director of the Texas Children's Hospital Center for Vaccine Development, where he leads a team aimed at developing new vaccines for hookworm infection, schistosomiasis, leishmaniasis, Chagas disease, and SARS/MERS/SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus diseases that affect hundreds of millions of children and adults worldwide. A champion of access to vaccines globally and in the United States, last year, he published the book, Preventing the Next Pandemic: Vaccine Diplomacy in a Time of Anti-science.
The keynote will be followed by an expert panel moderated by Carlos del Rio, MD, who is a distinguished professor of medicine in the Division of Infectious Diseases at the Emory University School of Medicine in Atlanta, GA; co-director of the Emory Center for AIDS Research; and co-principal investigator of the Emory−Centers for Disease Control and Prevention HIV Clinical Trials Unit.
Dr. del Rio has been a local and national leader during the COVID-19 pandemic, conducting research, developing policies, writing scientific publications, and making media appearances. His research focuses on early diagnosis, access to care, compliance with anti-retrovirals, and prevention of HIV infection. He has worked for over a decade with hard-to-reach populations to improve outcomes related to HIV.
They will be joined on the panel by three other experts:
Timothy G. Evans, MD, PhD, is associate dean of the School of Population and Global Health at McGill University. He was named executive director of Canada's COVID-19 Immunity Task Force in April 2020. Dr. Evans has been at the forefront of advancing global health equity and strengthening health delivery for more than 20 years. From 2003 to 2010, he was assistant director general at the World Health Organization, where he led the Commission on Social Determinants of Health and oversaw production of the annual World Health Report. He has co-founded many partnerships, including the Global Alliance on Vaccines and Immunization. His previous positions include serving as dean of the James P. Grant School of Public Health at BRAC University in Dhaka, Bangladesh.
Jennifer B. Nuzzo, DrPH, is professor of epidemiology and director of the pandemic center at the Brown University School of Public Health. She is also a senior fellow for global health at the Council on Foreign Relations. Her work focuses on global health security, public health preparedness and response, and health systems resilience. With colleagues from the Nuclear Threat Initiative and the Economist Intelligence Unit, she co-leads the development of the first ever Global Health Security Index, which rates 195 countries’ public health capabilities; commitment to international norms; and socioeconomic, political, and environmental risk environments. Dr. Nuzzo also directs the Outbreak Observatory, which conducts research to improve outbreak preparedness and response. She regularly advises national governments, companies, and nonprofit organizations on pandemic preparedness and response.
Reed V. Tuckson, MD, is managing director of Tuckson Health Connections, a vehicle to advance initiatives that support optimal health and well-being through health promotion and disease prevention, applied data and analytics, enhanced quality and efficiency in care delivery, and the application of telehealth and biotech innovations. He is a co-founder of the Black Coalition Against COVID, an interdisciplinary effort working to mitigate the COVID-19 pandemic in Washington, D.C., and nationally. He served for many years as executive vice president and chief of medical affairs for UnitedHealth Group, a Fortune 20 company. Dr. Tuckson has been appointed to leadership roles at the National Institutes of Health, National Academy of Medicine, and other federal advisory committees, as well as several corporate, nonprofit, and academic boards.