Faculty and Staff News
COVID-19: News you need to know
Editor’s note: In the coming weeks, look for “News you need to know” in INScope. This update will include key messages of importance to the IU School of Medicine community as the situation with the COVID-19 pandemic evolves.
News you need to know – April 23, 2020
A message from Dean Hess:
According to recent modeling, Indiana has likely reached the COVID-19 peak. However, it remains just as important for all of us to continue practicing social distancing in order to keep those numbers down. The IU Restart Committee has started thinking through the ways we can resume face-to-face contact for our school community. Those talks are still in the early stages, but I am confident that this group will develop a plan that can be implemented when the time is right. Until then, continue to stay at home whenever possible, and remember we are #INthistogether.
School launches first study assessing active COVID-19 in asymptomatic people
IU School of Medicine researchers are launching a community-based study to find out how many people in Marion County who aren’t currently showing symptoms have COVID-19.
“We know that not everyone who contracts COVID-19 shows symptoms, which is why it’s so important to understand how common it is in the community,” said John, who is the director of the Ryan White Center for Pediatric Infectious Disease and Global Health at IU School of Medicine. “Our team has been working together for weeks to make sure we could start the study as quickly as possible, since we know how valuable this information will be. There are currently no community studies in the U.S. that assess active infection in both adults and children.”
People who are already part of the All IN for Health volunteer registry will receive invitations to participate via email if they live in Marion County. Other people who are interested in joining the study can learn more on the All IN for Health website.
For more on the groundbreaking study that launched today, visit the Newsroom.
All School Meeting is next Wednesday; register to attend
Don’t forget to register for the spring All School Meeting, which will be held via Zoom from 4:30-6 pm EDT, Wednesday, April 29. IU School of Medicine Dean Jay L. Hess, MD, PhD, MHSA, will reflect on recent accomplishments, provide important schoolwide updates and share plans for the future. The meeting is open to all faculty, staff and learners.
IU School of Medicine announces plans for Class of 2020 virtual commencement
IU School of Medicine is busy making plans for a special virtual graduation ceremony for the Class of 2020. The event will be held at 10 am EDT, Friday, May 15. In addition to showing a photo and reading the name of each graduate, the virtual celebration will feature student speakers, Class of 2020 award winners and photos and videos submitted by the class.
With consideration of the current pandemic and massive public health needs, the school also has engaged a new and highly recognized national graduation speaker.
Watch upcoming issues of INScope for details on the new commencement speaker and access information for attending the virtual event.
August M. Watanabe Prize in Translational Research: Call for 2021 nominations
Indiana University School of Medicine is accepting nominations for the 2021 August M. Watanabe Prize in Translational Research, awarded to an investigator who has made a significant contribution to the field of translational science.
The winner of the 2021 Watanabe Prize in Translational Research will receive a $100,000 award and spend time in Indianapolis from September 15-17, 2021, as a visiting dignitary to share knowledge with audiences at IU School of Medicine and partner institutions.
To nominate someone for the prize, submit a copy of the nominee’s current curriculum vitae (CV) and a letter of nomination, including a detailed description of the nominee’s major translational research accomplishments and the impact of these contributions to the fields of science and/or medicine. Letters should be submitted on official letterhead and signed by the nominator.
Email complete nomination materials with the nominee’s name in the subject line by Wednesday, July 1.
Students recognized among IUPUI Elite 50
Five IU School of Medicine students were named to the IUPUI Elite 50, recognizing graduate and professional students who demonstrate excellence beyond the classroom in areas such as campus leadership, scholarly work and community engagement.
The following students from IU School of Medicine were selected for Elite 50 awards:
Kline was named to the Premier 10 list and also received the Charles R. Bantz Award for Excellence.
Due to COVID-19, the dinner honoring the Elite 50 was canceled. The university’s Elite 50 committee is determining how to celebrate the honorees in lieu of the in-person ceremony.
Indiana CTSI partners with Ivy Tech to develop 3D printed face shields
The Indiana Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute (CTSI) is working to do its part to support Indiana hospitals and other organizations on the front lines of the war against COVID-19. Indiana CTSI aims to help alleviate the shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE) by developing designs and mobilizing 3D printers for rapid manufacturing at partner universities—Indiana University, Purdue University and the University of Notre Dame. As part of this effort, the Indiana CTSI is also partnering with the local campuses of Ivy Tech Community College.
The teams are currently focused on optimizing and printing medical face shields and have already started printing PPE for distribution. As production ramps up, the coordinating teams plan to work with hospitals and other organizations to determine individual needs.
For more details and photos, visit Indiana CTSI.
Regenstrief Institute and partners develop data dashboard for Indiana to track and respond to outbreak
To support Indiana’s effort to track and respond to the COVID-19 outbreak, the Regenstrief Institute and partners have developed a data dashboard. The tool augments the state’s information by providing data on patients’ course of care through local health care systems. Data on hospitalizations and intensive care unit stays gives state leaders a more comprehensive picture of the COVID-19 pandemic and its impact on Hoosiers and the health care system, as well as perspective to anticipate emerging hot spots and surges.
The partnership makes possible access to data from the majority of Indiana’s health systems and laboratories. Access to these data during this emergency, and to the experts who help with interpretation, allows public health professionals to identify key patterns and predict how to best respond as COVID-19 cases spread across the state.
Partners in in the effort are the Indiana State Department of Health, Indiana Family Social Services Administration, Indiana Management Performance Hub, Regenstrief Institute, Indiana Health Information Exchange, Indiana University Richard M. Fairbanks School of Public Health and Indiana University School of Medicine.
Learn more about the dashboard and view a video clip from Indiana State Health Commissioner Kristina Box, MD.
Indiana CTSI coordinates funding opportunities for COVID-19 research
The Indiana Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute (CTSI) is serving as the coordinating center for Indiana University and IU School of Medicine research related to the COVID-19 pandemic. Faculty and staff across the CTSI are working together to provide and share resources, expertise and information as quickly as possible, in support of IU researchers (plus researchers at Purdue University and the University of Notre Dame, wherever possible) conducting studies designed to help treat, prevent and protect the public from coronavirus.
Faculty and Staff News
Highlighting IU's front-line medical workers
Indiana University's communications and marketing team is looking for IU School of Medicine faculty, students, trainees and alumni to be part of a series highlighting IU people working on the front lines of COVID-19.
If you are caring for COVID-19 patients in Indiana, the communications team wants to work with you to help show the faces of real people working hard every day to help others during this pandemic.
The university’s communications team is looking for participants to submit short videos (which can be shot on a mobile phone) about your experiences and/or to get your portraits taken after a work shift (as you are: in uniforms or with imprints from PPE on your face).
If you are willing to help with this project, contact Andrea Zeek, senior news and media strategist at IU Studios, at email@example.com or 317-985-6004 at your earliest convenience for more information.
Deadline extended: Apply for IU Tuition Benefit by April 30
To provide IU employees additional flexibility during the COVID-19 pandemic, the deadline to apply for the IU Tuition Benefit for the spring 2020 semester has been extended to Thursday, April 30. If you or your dependents are registered for IU courses and wish to use the tuition benefit for the spring 2020 semester/term, you must submit your application by April 30. Search for “Tuition Benefit” in One.IU or apply using this form.
With questions or for additional information, visit the links below or contact IU Human Resources at askHR@iu.edu or 812-856-1234.
- Tuition benefit plan provisions
- Tuition benefit subsidy rates
- Tuition benefit Frequently Asked Questions
May 7 new employee welcome session transitioning to Zoom
The next IU School of Medicine new employee welcome session will be held at 8:30 am, Thursday, May 7. The session will take place via Zoom, and registration is required.
The welcome session provides an opportunity for new staff members to learn about IU School of Medicine and how their role contributes to the school’s mission and priorities. This session will be recorded for future new staff to view upon their arrival until new sessions (either online or in person) are scheduled.
Questions? Email IU School of Medicine Human Resources at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Funding available for translational research for COVID-19
The Indiana CTSI Molecular Therapeutics Program Pilot Grant program is accepting applications for translational research projects that can be rapidly mobilized to help address the COVID-19 pandemic. This RFA is designed to support projects with preliminary aims that can be accomplished in six months (no-cost extension can be approved up to one year) and will contribute new knowledge that can inform the COVID-19 response and/or lay critical groundwork for subsequent research.
Preference will be given to proposals that include contributions from two or more Indiana CTSI-sponsoring affiliates. More information is available. Application deadline is Thursday, May 7.
Questions? Contact Padma Portonovo at email@example.com.
Kelley offers business training for health care professionals who are not physicians
Get the business knowledge you need in just 12 months—while you work—with the Graduate Certificate in Medical Management from the Kelley School of Business. The program is available at no tuition cost to IU School of Medicine employees.
Learn more at upcoming Zoom information sessions
Sign up for one of the upcoming info sessions to find out more:
- Wednesday, April 29; 12:15 pm
- Wednesday, May 6; 6 pm
Students in Kelley’s Graduate Certificate in Medical Management program come from a wide variety of backgrounds and include business professionals, health care administrators, practice managers, nurses, study coordinators and care coordinators. Contact Professor Kim Saxton at firstname.lastname@example.org or 317-275-1067 with questions.
On the blog: Learn more about Ramadan
IU School of Medicine is dedicated to creating an environment that fosters inclusion and awareness of everyone’s cultures and religions. This is a special time for members of the Muslim community who are celebrating an important month-long observance. In 2020, Ramadan begins the evening of Thursday, April 23, and runs through the evening of Saturday, May 23. Learn what Ramadan is, how it is celebrated and how COVID-19 may impact these celebrations in this Spirit of Medicine blog post.
Telehealth basics course now available for social work educators, clinicians
The IU School of Social Work is offering a free introductory program, “Telehealth Basics for Social Work Educators and Clinicians Responding to COVID-19.” Online and self-paced, the program includes three modules that provide help with risk-management, ethical guidelines, service policies, social media, and strategies and skills for engaging with clients online. Participants completing the program can earn two CEUs.
IU Health begins limited antibody seroprevalence project
There is currently a lot of interest in the possibility of testing for SARS-CoV-2 antibodies in individuals who have recovered from COVID-19 to see if they have developed immunity. The IU Health Pathology lab has developed limited antibody testing capabilities and is currently running a limited seroprevalence* project to learn more about how antibodies might assist in recovery. IU School of Medicine is also conducting research in this area. However, at this time, there is no general antibody testing available for team members or the general public.
Results of the seroprevalence study and others in this area will give scientists a greater understanding of the potential for vaccines and other remedies for COVID-19.
* Seroprevalence is the level of a pathogen in a population, as measured in blood serum.
COVID-19 symptom checker debuts
IU Health has launched a free online COVID-19 symptom checker to let the public quickly and easily self-screen for COVID-19. The bot asks a series of easy questions and, depending on the responses and the severity of symptoms, will recommend additional resources and next steps including the option to self-enroll in a digital service for symptom tracking and daily text messages. The symptom checker is available on IU Health's public website in the Coronavirus (COVID-19) Resource Center.
IU Health updates mask policy
Earlier this week, IU Health updated its mask policy to further prevent transmission of COVID-19 from those who may be infected, but may or may not be experiencing symptoms. Until further notice, everyone entering an IU Health health care facility (inpatient and outpatient) will wear a surgical/isolation mask, including team members, visitors and patients.
Shekhar receives Bepko outstanding administrator award
Anantha Shekhar, MD, PhD, executive associate dean for research affairs, IU School of Medicine, and founding director of Indiana CTSI, received the Gerald L. Bepko Outstanding Administrator Award from the IUPUI Faculty Council Executive Committee.
“It is truly an honor to receive this award,” Shekhar said. “During my years here, I have been fortunate to work with faculty and trainees at all levels in my various administrative roles within IU School of Medicine, as well as across the IUPUI campus, and facilitate collaboration. Both of those are important to create a dynamic environment for fostering the advancement of science.”
The Bepko award was established in 2003 to recognize outstanding administrators who demonstrate qualities of a servant leader (such as humor, humanity and humility), build consensus with faculty in new initiatives and represent IUPUI in a positive light to the broader community.
For more, visit Indiana CTSI.