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Emotional Contagion in Times of COVID: From Fear to Hope

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Event description

The USC Institute on Inequalities in Global Health and the USC COVID-19 Pandemic Research Center (CPRC) invite you to join us for a special Grand Rounds in Population and Public Health with the world's leading expert on vaccine hesitancy.

The event features Dr. Heidi Larson, director of The Vaccine Confidence Project and professor of anthropology, risk and decision science at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine. Dr. Larson will discuss the power of emotions and beliefs in the COVID response, and how historic and current inequities can fuel fear around mass vaccination campaigns.

The event will also feature reactions and commentary from Dr. Lourdes Baezconde-Garbanati, associate dean for community initiatives at the USC Keck School of Medicine, and Dr. Jeffrey Klausner, clinical professor of population and public health sciences at the USC Keck School of Medicine.

Keynote Speaker:


Dr. Heidi Larson
 is director of The Vaccine Confidence Project and professor of anthropology, risk and decision science at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine; clinical professor, Department of Health Metrics Sciences, University of Washington, Seattle; guest professor at the Centre for Evaluation of Vaccination, University of Antwerp, Belgium; and Visiting Professor, Department of Medicine, National University of Singapore. Her research focuses on the analysis of social and political factors that can effect uptake of health interventions, with a particular interest in risk and rumors from clinical trials to delivery — and building public trust.

Prof. Larson previously headed Global Immunization Communication at UNICEF, chaired Gavi's Advocacy Task Force, and served on the WHO SAGE Working Group on vaccine hesitancy. 

She is the author of "Stuck: How Vaccine Rumors Start — and Why They Don't Go Away" (Oxford University Press, 2020) and has published widely and lectured internationally on the drivers and enablers of vaccine confidence. Prof. Larson was awarded the 2021 Edinburgh Medal in recognition of her scientific work on the contagion of misinformation and its impact on human health.

With commentary from:


Dr. Lourdes Baezconde-Garbanati is the associate dean for community initiatives and a tenured professor at the USC Keck School of Medicine. She also serves as the co-director and project leader of the Patient Education and Community Outreach Center at the Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center. Dr. Baezconde-Garbanati is a founding director of the Center for Health Equity in the Americas, focused on research and education that aims to reduce disparities and achieve health equity throughout the Americas.


Dr. Jeffrey Klausner is a clinical professor of population and public health sciences at the USC Keck School of Medicine. Dr. Klausner's research interests focus on applied epidemiology and the prevention and control of infectious diseases of public health importance. He has a particular interest in the use of information, digital and laboratory technology to facilitate access to treatment for disadvantaged populations.

Moderators:


Dr. Howard Hu is the Flora L. Thornton Chair of the Population and Public Health Sciences department at the Keck School of Medicine. Dr. Hu has led multi-institutional and international teams of scientists, students and fellows devoted to investigating the environmental, nutritional, social, psychosocial, genetic and epigenetic determinants of chronic disease, and impaired child development in birth cohort and aging cohort studies around the world.


Prof. Sofia Gruskin is the director of the USC Institute on Inequalities in Global Health; professor of preventive medicine and chief of the Disease Prevention, Policy and Global Health division at the Keck School of Medicine; professor of law and preventive medicine at the Gould School of Law; and an affiliate faculty member with the Spacial Sciences Institute at the Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences. 


This free, public event is co-sponsored by the USC Institute on Inequalities in Global Health (IIGH) and the USC COVID-19 Pandemic Research Center (CPRC).


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