Lecture: Disparities in Covid-19 Rates and Vaccinations

A View from the Frontline of the Battle against the Pandemic

The 2021 Applied Health Sciences Distinguished Lecture Series will be presented by Travis Gayles, MD, PhD on Wednesday, April 7, 2021 from 12:00-1:00pm. He will be speaking on Disparities in Covid-19 Rates and Vaccinations: A View from the Frontline of the Battle Against the Pandemic.   Registration is required for this event.


About the Presentation
Long-standing systemic health and social inequities have put many people from racial and ethnic minority groups at increased risk of getting sick and dying from COVID-19. These disparities have unfortunately continued throughout the pandemic, including most recently in the distribution of Covid vaccines. To address these issues, this talk will share firsthand reports from the health department perspective in pandemic response and how policy makers and public health officials have worked to address these disparities and implement equitable practices to remove obstacles to testing, support services, and vaccines. Additionally, implications on understanding the underlying root causes of and improving these disparities in a post-Covid world will be examined.

About Dr. Gayles
Dr. Travis Gayles is the Health Officer and Chief of Public Health Services for Montgomery County, Maryland. A 1997 Ron Brown Scholar, he received his B.A. in Public Policy Studies and African American Studies from Duke University. He continued his education at the University of Illinois and attained both an M.D. degree and a Ph.D. degree (Community Health & Health Policy). Dr. Gayles completed his residency in pediatrics at Northwestern University and an NIH-supported fellowship in Academic Pediatrics with a focus in Adolescent Medicine at Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago. Before beginning his current role in 2017, Dr. Gayles served as the Chief Medical Officer for the D.C. Department of Health’s HIV/AIDS, Hepatitis, STD, and Tuberculosis Administration. He currently holds faculty appointments at NYU, Johns Hopkins University, and the University of Maryland. In addition to his academic work, Dr. Gayles is a member of the CDC/HRSA Advisory Committee on HIV, Viral Hepatitis, and STD Prevention and Treatment, and he serves as Chair of the Maryland State Immunization Committee and as Co-Chair of the Metropolitan Washington Council of Government’s Health Officials Committee. The opinions of Dr. Gayles have appeared in prominent news outlets such as the New York Times, Washington Post, and 60 Minutes.


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