March 18, 2020

Dean’s Message: Confronting COVID-19 as a community

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I wanted to take a moment to thank all of you for your vigilance, dedication, and flexibility during this stressful time. As we work to flatten the curve of the COVID-19 outbreak, I know that many of you will be away from your families, working with limited resources, and shouldering many burdens as we shift into a limited business model.

I have been extremely proud of the way our community has handled these issues thus far, and I know that I will continue to sing your praises over the coming weeks. Dr. Jeanne Marrazzo and other physicians from the Division of Infectious Diseases have been absolutely integral as we work to not only prepare as an institution but also to share the most up-to-date information with the public. I’d like to thank them for all of the hours they are contributing to guide our leaders as well as provide interviews to countless media outlets.

To our clinical facing faculty and staff, I know that you may feel daunted at the challenges that lie ahead. I want you to know that you have my full support as well as the support of my leadership team as you work to protect our patients and one another while continuing to deliver top notch care. We will do everything within our power to provide you with what is needed throughout the coming weeks. Thank you for your perseverance.

To our teaching faculty and our researchers, I realize that you, too, are being asked to make very large modifications and quickly. I deeply value the work that all of you are doing, and I know that this temporary transition will not be a simple one. Thank you for seeking and implementing unique solutions, so that we may continue doing the life changing work that happens at UAB every day.

Times like these are what ultimately define a community, and I can already see that ours is coming together selflessly to accomplish what we must. UAB’s collaborative spirit is in full swing, and I hope that all of you will continue to lend a hand when called upon. Take good care of yourselves, and do not be afraid to ask for support or assistance should you need it. Please know that we will do our very best to keep you updated and share information transparently. As always, I’m very proud to work among you.