Graham School Events

A Roundtable Discussion Series @Graham: COVID-19 Perspectives from the University of Chicago Medical Center


Online via Zoom

University Of Chicago Medicine Lab Coat and Stethoscope

Photo courtesy of The University of Chicago Medicine

Our first discussion with Dr. William Parker and Dr. Stephen Weber focuses on COVID-19 and its effects on patient care and hospital operations at the University of Chicago Medical Center (UCMC). As a physician, bioethicist, and data scientist, Dr. Parker speaks to the experience of treating patients on the frontlines of the pandemic. He also discusses research he has conducted on “crisis standards of care,” particularly as they pertain to resource allocation and management. Dr. Weber, as Chief Medical Officer at UCMC, talks about the epidemiology of the virus, the how and when of pandemic preparations, as well as the persistent uncertainties produced by the disease. He further explains the massive new demands the pandemic has placed on various hospital functions, from supply procurement to medical staffing and vaccine delivery.

 The roundtable consists of one hour of panel discussion, followed by thirty minutes of question and answer with the audience. It is moderated by Dr. Doriane Miller and Professor Emily Lynn Osborn.

View the Recording

Background reading and viewing:

Melanie Evans and Christine Mai-Duc, “COVID-19 Crisis Forces California Hospitals to Plan Who Gets Life-Saving Care,” The Wall Street Journal, 8 January 2021.

"The COVID-19 vaccine's uneven distribution." Salon, January 28, 2021.
Article features Asst. Prof. William Parker's analysis of healthcare disparities and COVID-19 deaths in Chicago

Bianca Martin, "How Can We Ensure Fair Distribution Of The COVID-19 Vaccine?" WBEZ Chicago, 1 February 2021.

Dr. Monica Peek and Dr. Stephen Weber, "COVID-19 Vaccine: Expert Q and A," University of Chicago Medicine, 19 January 2021.

William Parker, Angira Patel, Craig Kulgman, and Gina Piscitello, “Lightfoot must activate phase 1b of COVID-19 vaccination now,” Chicago Tribune, 11 January 2021. 

Stephen Weber, “What to know about the COVID-19 vaccine,” University of Chicago Medicine, 12 January 2021.

"'Masks are important and masks are safe': Dr. Emily Landon addresses COVID-19 myths, asks Americans to help flatten the curve again at Illinois governor's press conference.” University of Chicago Medicine, 30 October 2020.

Speaker Bios:

Dr. William Parker is a pulmonologist and bioethicist. With the use of data science, Dr. Parker studies resource allocation and distribution in patient care. He is particularly concerned with designing systems that efficiently and fairly allocate scarce healthcare resources to patients most in need. Dr. Parker has published research on organ donation, and the impact of allocation rules and geographic competition on treatment practices and results at transplant centers. He is currently using similar methodologies to analyze access to care and treatment outcomes for COVID-19. 

Dr. Stephen Weber is the Chief Medical Officer of UCMC. In this role, Dr, Weber is responsible for managing the hospital’s clinical operations and upholding its standard of care. He is also an infectious disease specialist with expertise in a wide variety of infections. Those include antimicrobial resistant infections in geriatric and other vulnerable populations, as well as healthcare-associated infections, such as those caused by multidrug-resistant organisms. Dr. Weber has also published on the diffusion of best practices in infection prevention, research which reflects his broader interest in the interface between public policy and infection prevention in hospitals in the United States. 


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