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Healthwatch: Dr. Leana Wen on winter viruses, mask & vax issues

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Dr. Leana Wen, emergency physician, media commentator and public health advocate, teaches at George Washington University's Milken Institute School of Public Health. (GWU photo)

Happy New Year! It’s the Midday Healthwatch with Dr. Leana Wen, our monthly conversation about important current issues in public health.

Rates of RSV and influenza (flu) are beginning to fall, but COVID-19 numbers are up around the country. The Maryland Health Department reported more than 1,500 new COVID cases in the last 24 hours, and that number is almost surely an undercount. Thirteen people died from COVID-related disease in the past 24 hours.

Lots of people are opting for masks again, but not many are opting for the bivalent booster to protect against the latest strains of the Omicron variant.

Leana Wen is with us for the hour today to talk about these and other developments in public health.

As always, we welcome your questions and comments about public health.

Dr. Wen is one of America’s most trusted and knowledgeable public health experts. She is an emergency physician and a former health commissioner of Baltimore. She teaches at the George Washington University's Milken Institute School of Public Health. She writes a column for the Washington Post.  She’s a medical analyst for CNN, a non-resident Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution and the author of Lifelines: A Doctor's Journey in the Fight for Public Health.

Dr. Leana Wen joins us on Zoom…

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Host, Midday (M-F 12:00-1:00)
Teria is a Supervising Producer on Midday.
Malarie is Midday's Supervisory Producer.
Rob is Midday's senior producer.