Faculty member and alumna, Shandy Dearth, MPH’02, has spent most of her career focusing on infections disease surveillance and emergency preparedness planning and response. In response to the COVID-19 outbreak, the IU Richard M. Fairbanks School of Public Health is proud of how Shandy has utilized her training and expertise to support the Marion County Public Health Department, and bridge the gap between available resources.
These resources include access to the latest scientific knowledge on COVID-19 available through academic journals, which often require a subscription. As an IU faculty member, Shandy has access to this information in real-time and support from IU leadership to spend time reviewing this information to assist during this global pandemic.
This allows her an opportunity to assist in compiling the most recent information to provide to Marion County Public Health Department officials. Once assembled, the planning team at the Marion County Public Health Department, who are responsible for creating the health department’s incident response system action plan, can review the information prior to daily planning meetings. Shandy attends these meetings, where the team reviews all new activities that have occurred since the previous day, summarizes case investigations, and creates plans and recommendations for the health departments response moving forward.
In addition to her role supporting the Marion County Public Health Department as it implements the incident response system plan, Shandy spent two days shadowing the nurse epidemiologists, and creating a staffing needs list for an anticipated surge in COVID-19 cases. Shandy praises the nurses and staff at the Marion County Public Health Department who have been working around the clock for the past three weeks, and was delighted to help them in any way. She continues to be ready to serve the health department in the future.
At the Fairbanks School of Public Health, we remain committed to advancing the public’s health and well-being through education, innovation, and leadership. As the COVID-19 outbreak continues to impact our nation, we will highlight the work of our faculty, staff, students, and alumni. If there is a story you would like to tell, please send that information to firstname.lastname@example.org.