COVID-19 Coalition

About the Coalition

Springing from the mission of MJH Life Sciences to improve quality of life through health care communications, education, and research, the MJH Life Sciences COVID-19 Coalition was formed to help keep health care professionals up-to-date and informed on the science and latest learnings on COVID-19.

Leveraging our relationships with top thought leaders across a variety of key specialties, the Coalition generates the most accurate, up-to-the-minute information on the pandemic's ever-evolving impact on health care professionals and the patients they treat.

Join us for biweekly webinars with discussions, viewpoints, audience Q&A, and an array of insight pieces on key COVID-related topics. And be sure to watch this space for the latest Coalition updates.

Meet the Coalition

Saskia v. Popescu, PhD, MPH, MA, CIC

Senior Infection Prevention Epidemiologist
Phoenix, Arizona

Angela Rasmussen, PhD

Associate Research Scientist
Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health

Tina Tan, MD, FAAP, FIDSA, FPIDS

Professor of Pediatrics
Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine

Jason M. Pogue, PharmD, BCPS, BCIDP

Clinical Professor
University of Michigan College of Pharmacy

Margaret Liu, MD

CEO, PAX Therapeutics
Professor of Microbiology and Immunology, University of California, San Francisco

Paul E. Sax, MD

Clinical Director, Division of Infectious Diseases
Brigham and Women's Hospital

Amesh Adalja, MD

Senior Scholar
Johns Hopkins University Center for Health Security

Carlos del Rio, MD

Distinguished Professor of Medicine
Emory University School of Medicine

Rachna Kalia, MD

Clinical Assistant Professor
KU Wichita Psychiatry

X
saskia

Saskia v. Popescu, PhD, MPH, MA, CIC

Senior Infection Prevention Epidemiologist
Phoenix, Arizona

Dr. Saskia Popescu is an infectious disease epidemiologist and infection prevention with a focus on hospital bio preparedness. He holds a PhD in Biodefense and an MPH in infectious disease epidemiology and is certified in infection control. She is a term assistant professor at George Mason University and an adjunct professor at the University of Arizona College of Public Health.

X
angela

Angela Rasmussen, PhD

Associate Research Scientist
Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health

Dr. Rasmussen is a virologist studying host responses to infection by combining classical virology with modern systems biology approaches. Her research objectives are to identify host response signatures predictive of infection severity or disease outcome and host pathways to target drug development or repurposing. She is particularly interested in viruses that are highly pathogenic, newly emergent or likely to emerge because of climate change, land development, or ecological disruption.

Dr. Rasmussen has employed Collaborative Cross (CC) mouse models, which provide an expanded range of disease presentations, to study viral disease characteristics. At the University of Washington, she developed a CC mouse model of Ebola virus disease, utilizing the diversity of CC mouse disease phenotypes to study genetic and transcriptomic factors underlying disease severity in humans. She is currently evaluating CC mouse models towards investigation of sex-specific host responses to viral infection, as well as to investigate disease presentation in other viruses that pose a major threat to global public health, such as dengue and influenza viruses. Ultimately, these host response profiles can be used for translational or biodefense applications, such as diagnosing infection, predicting disease severity, informing vaccine design, and developing or repurposing host-targeted drugs to impair virus replication or reverse pathology.

X
tina

Tina Tan, MD, FAAP, FIDSA, FPIDS

Professor of Pediatrics
Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine

Dr. Tan is Professor of Pediatrics at the Feinberg School of Medicine, Northwestern University, and a Pediatric Infectious Diseases attending; Medical Director of the International Patient Services Program (IPS); co-Director of the Pediatric Travel Medicine Clinic; and Director of the International Adoptee Clinic at Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago, Chicago, Illinois. She is board certified in Pediatrics and Pediatric Infectious Diseases.

Dr. Tan is a member of the Board of Directors of the Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA). She also is a member of the IDSA Education Committee and the chairperson of the IDSA Task Force on Diversity, Inclusion, Access & Equity. She has served as Chairperson of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) Section on Infectious Diseases (SOID – 2014-2018) and as a member of the AAP Committee on Infectious Diseases (COID – Redbook Committee – 2010 - 2018). She currently serves as a member of the: AAP Global Immunization Advocacy Project Advisory Committee and is a Technical Advisor for the AAP/CDC Global Immunization Advocacy Project, the AAP Antimicrobial Resistance and Stewardship Workgroup – Education Subcommittee, AAP Expert Pertussis Cocooning Advisory Committee, and is a liaison to the CDC ACIP Pertussis Working Group and to the Illinois Chapter of the AAP OB/GYN Immunizations and Pregnancy Outreach Committee. She is a member of the American Board of Pediatrics (ABP) Global Health Task Force Dissemination and Advocacy Work Group. Dr. Tan is a member of: the NIH/NIAID Clinical Trial Planning and Implementation Grant Review Panel; the Vaccine and Related Biologic Products Advisory Committee (VRBPAC) of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Board of Scientific Counselors, Office of Infectious Diseases, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) where she serves as co-Chair of the AFM Task Force and the Vaccine Confidence Task Force. She served as a member of the Advisory Commission on Childhood Vaccines of the US Department of Health and Human Services (2016-2019).

She is the Editor-in-Chief of Contemporary Pediatrics and she serves on the editorial boards of: the Journal of the Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society (Official Journal of the Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society - PIDS), Internal Medicine Reviews, and Vaccines.

She is the Co-Chairperson and US Representative to the International Steering Committee of the Global Pertussis Initiative (GPI); a member and consultant to the Steering Committee of the Latin America Without Pertussis Initiative (PAHEF, SLIPE); a member of the Expert Pertussis Core Team for Latin America & the Carribean: Pertussis Action Plan 2020; a member of the Board of Directors of the World Association of Infectious Diseases and Immunological Disorders (WAidid); and a member of the US National Pertussis Task Force (AAP and Every Child by Two). She also is a member of the vaccine advisory boards of Merck, Sanofi Pasteur, GSK and Pfizer/Wyeth.

Her interests include: pertussis disease and vaccines, pneumococcal disease and vaccines, CA-MRSA infections, antibiotic resistance, vaccines and vaccine preventable diseases, general infectious diseases, vaccination of cancer patients with routinely recommended adult preventative vaccines, and vaccine education for healthcare providers and patients.

X
jason

Jason M. Pogue, PharmD, BCPS, BCIDP

Clinical Professor
University of Michigan College of Pharmacy

Dr. Jason Pogue is a clinical professor in the Department of Clinical Pharmacy at the University of Michigan College of Pharmacy and an infectious diseases clinical pharmacist at Michigan Medicine. Prior to this position he spent just over a decade at the Detroit Medical Center (DMC) as an infectious diseases clinical pharmacist at Sinai-Grace Hospital and as the co-chair of the Antimicrobial Stewardship Committee at the DMC.

Dr. Pogue received a bachelor degree in Chemistry from Gannon University, before obtaining his doctor of pharmacy degree from the University of Pittsburgh. He then completed a PGY-1 pharmacy residency at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center followed by an infectious diseases PGY-2 residency at the University of Michigan Health Systems. His research interests focus on epidemiology and management of multi-drug resistant Gram-negative organisms and antimicrobial stewardship.

Dr. Pogue is a recognized leader in Gram-negative resistance and antimicrobial stewardship as evidenced by his significant contribution of over 100 peer-reviewed articles, over 100 abstracts, multiple book chapters, and presentations at numerous national and international conferences. Dr. Pogue currently serves at the president of the Society of Infectious Diseases Pharmacists and is an active member of The United States Committee on Antimicrobial Susceptibility Testing (USCAST) where he is intimately involved with antimicrobial susceptibility breakpoint setting. Dr. Pogue also serves as the clinical pharmacy lead for two National Institutes of Health (NIH) funded international studies targeting strategies to optimize polymyxin usage.

X
margaret

Margaret Liu, MD

CEO, PAX Therapeutics
Principal, ProTherImmune
Chairman of the Board and President Emeritus, International Society for Vaccines
Foreign Adjunct Professor, Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm
Professor of Microbiology and Immunology, University of California, San Francisco

Dr. Liu is a world-renowned expert in the fields of vaccines, immunotherapy, gene therapy, and global health. Dr. Liu obtained an MD from Harvard Medical School and completed her clinical and research training at Massachusetts General Hospital/Harvard Medical School and MIT. She has pioneered two important new technologies for vaccines and for treating cancer for which she has received numerous awards internationally and two honorary doctorates including an MD honoris causa, was given by the Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm, where she had been previously invited to lecture by the Nobel committee. She is known as "The Mother of DNA Vaccines;" DNA vaccines are one of the approaches being used for a potential COVID-19 vaccine. She has led and advised multiple efforts to develop vaccines for global health as well as gene-based approaches for delivery of therapeutic proteins and is a member of the WHO drafting group for guidelines for DNA and mRNA vaccines.

Dr. Liu is CEO of PAX Therapeutics, consults for companies, investment firms, universities, and scientific non-governmental and governmental organizations, is a Foreign Adjunct Professor at the Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm, and an Adjunct Full Professor at the University of California, San Francisco, and is the Chairman of the Board and President Emeritus of the International Society for Vaccines. She was the Senior Advisor in Vaccinology at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and Executive Vice-Chair of the International Vaccine Institute (IVI), an independent international organization established by the UN with signatory countries, in Seoul, Korea. She has held various executive and board positions at pharma and biotech companies (Merck, Chiron, Sangamo, Transgene) and is currently a Director at Ipsen and Adjuvance Technologies.

X
paul

Paul E. Sax, MD

Clinical Director, Division of Infectious Diseases
Brigham and Women's Hospital

Dr. Sax is clinical director of the Division of Infectious Diseases and the HIV Program at Brigham and Women's Hospital (BWH), and professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School. Dr. Sax received his MD from Harvard Medical School, did his residency in Internal Medicine at BWH, then fellowship in Infectious Diseases at Massachusetts General Hospital. He is Editor-in-Chief of Open Forum Infectious Diseases, is Section Editor of HIV/AIDS in UpToDate, on the Editorial Board of NEJM Journal Watch Infectious Diseases (where he writes the HIV and ID Observations blog), and on the editorial advisory board of Medscape HIV/AIDS. Dr. Sax is also on the core faculty of the International AIDS Society – USA, and teaches regularly on HIV and infectious diseases locally, nationally, and internationally. In addition to his clinical practice and teaching, Dr. Sax's ongoing areas of research include clinical trials of antiretroviral therapies, cost-effectiveness of management strategies for HIV, and toxicity of antiretroviral therapy. He is presently the principal investigator at the BWH AIDS Clinical Trials Unit, and is a member of the Cost-Effectiveness of Preventing AIDS Complications (CEPAC) Research Group.

X
amesh

Amesh Adalja, MD

Senior Scholar
Johns Hopkins University Center for Health Security

Dr. Adalja is a senior scholar at the Johns Hopkins University Center for Health Security. 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 the system of care for infectious disease emergencies, and as an external advisor to the New York City Health and Hospital Emergency Management Highly Infectious Disease training program, as well as on a FEMA working group on nuclear disaster recovery. He is currently a member of the Infectious Diseases Society of America's (IDSA) Precision Medicine working group and is one of their media spokespersons; he previously served on their public health and diagnostics committees. 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's Infectious Disease 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; he was also selected for their mobile acute care strike team. Dr. Adalja's expertise is frequently sought by international and national media.

Dr. Adalja is an associate editor of the journal Health Security. He was a coeditor of the volume Global Catastrophic Biological Risks, a contributing author for the Handbook of Bioterrorism and Disaster Medicine, the Emergency Medicine CorePendium, Clinical Microbiology Made Ridiculously Simple, and a NATO volume on bioterrorism. He has also published in such journals as the New England Journal of Medicine, the Journal of Infectious Diseases, Clinical Infectious Diseases, Emerging Infectious Diseases, and the Annals of Emergency Medicine.

X
amesh

Carlos del Rio, MD

Distinguished Professor of Medicine
Emory University School of Medicine

Dr. del Rio is Distinguished Professor of Medicine at Emory University School of Medicine, and professor of global health and epidemiology at the Rollins School of Emory University. He serves as the Executive Associate Dean of Emory University School of Medicine at Grady Health System, and is the co-director and principal investigator of the Emory Center for AIDS Research. His research interests include the early diagnosis of HIV, linkage to and retention in HIV care, and prevention of HIV infection. He has long worked in hospitals and clinics with hard-to-reach populations including substance abuse users to improve outcomes of those infected with HIV and toprevent infection among those at risk. Dr. del Rio also works on emerging infections, epidemic and pandemics including the response to the 2009 Pandemic Influenza A (H1N1) as member of the WHO and CDC advisory teams. During the COVID-19 pandemic Dr. del Rio has been a leader locally and nationally, doing research, developing policies, writing scientific publications and making media appearances. Dr. del Rio is a native of Mexico, where he attended medical school at Universidad La Salle, graduating in 1983. He did his internal medicine and infectious diseases fellowship at Emory. Dr. del Rio has received multiple honors and awards including the Emory University Thomas Jefferson Award in 2014 and the "Ohtli Award" given by the Government of Mexico for "distinguished work that benefits the interests of the Mexican community or communities of Mexican origin living in the US." He was selected by the Atlanta Magazine as one of the 55 most influential foreign born Atlantans in 2007 and as one of "Atlanta 500 most powerful leaders" in 2020. Dr. del Rio was elected to the National Academy of Medicine (previously the Institute of Medicine) of the National Academies of Sciences in 2013 and elected as the National Academy of Medicine foreign secretary in 2020.

X
kalia

Rachna Kalia, MD

Clinical Assistant Professor
KU Wichita Psychiatry

Dr. Kalia is assistant professor of psychiatry with KU School of Medicine-Wichita, and clinical director of their consultation-liaison group working at Ascension Via Christi hospitals in the area. She sits on various committees in the department and school, as well as serves as clinician leader on several organizational matters within Ascension Via Christi system, pertinent to mental health, including COVID care. She leads the residency program's QI conference series, and has been invited by local nursing home organizations, hospital systems and universities to present on complex topics such as delirium, managing aggression/violence in hospitals and nursing homes, impact of social media on mental health. Being the associate program director of the residency program and a core faculty member, she also has special interest in educating the trainees on variety of complex medical and psychiatric conditions co-occurring in patients, both in inpatient and outpatient settings. She is a member of several organizations which are involved in advocacy and promotion of mental health in Kansas including Sedgwick County Suicide Prevention Coalition.