Members of the UW–Madison campus community and the public are invited to a presentation on Wednesday, Jan. 29 at 10 a.m. entitled, “Hot Topics in Public Health: Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) in Real Time.” The discussion will occur in room 1306 Health Sciences Learning Center.

A panel of scientists, physicians, epidemiologists, and experts in infection control, global health, clinical testing, vaccine development and health system responses will reflect on the emerging coronavirus outbreak.

Expected panelists include:

  • Kristen Bernard, DVM, PhD. Bernard is a professor in the School of Veterinary Medicine and an expert on zoonotic viruses, which are transmitted between animals and people. She currently works on mosquito-borne and tick-borne viruses, but also worked with another coronavirus, SARS, after it first emerged in 2003. 
  • Christopher Olsen, DVM, PhD. A professor emeritus in the School of Veterinary Medicine, Olsen is also an expert on zoonotic infections. He has worked on coronaviruses in animals and was a coronavirus consultant in the early days of the 2003 SARS pandemic.
  • Ajay Sethi, PhD, MHS. Sethi is an associate professor of population health and an expert on infectious disease epidemiology.
  • Allen Bateman, PhD, MPH. Bateman is an assistant director at the Wisconsin State Laboratory of Hygiene. He will discuss clinical testing for viral pathogens.
  • Nasia Safdar, MD, PhD. A professor of medicine, Safdar is the Medical Director of Infection Control at UW Hospital and Clinics.
  • Patrick Kelly, MD. Kelly is the interim director of medical services and a primary care provider with University Health Services, which serves the UW–Madison student population.
  • Ryan Westergaard, MD, PhD, MPH. A professor of medicine, Westergaard’s clinical interests include human immunodeficiency virus and hepatitis C virus. He serves as the Chief Medical Officer and State Epidemiologist for Communicable Diseases for the Wisconsin Department of Health Services.
  • Thomas Friedrich, PhD. A professor in the School of Veterinary Medicine, Fredrich’s research focuses on the evolution and emergence of AIDS, influenza, Zika and other viruses, and the design and testing of vaccines.
  • Emily Kumlien. Kumlien is a Media Strategist with UW Health covering infectious disease topics. She will discuss how communication to the press and the public is conducted during viral outbreaks and pandemics.

Co-moderators will be Jonathan L. Temte, MD, PhD, Associate Dean for Public Health and Community Engagement, and Robyn M. Perrin, PhD, Director of Strategic Communications.

The hour had originally been slated for a public talk by Robert R. Redfield, MD, Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Redfield’s duties this week have prevented him from being able to follow through with his visit to UW–Madison.

Members of the media are welcome to attend.