I don’t know about all of you, but I am feeling more upbeat lately! I’ve been out to dinner, to a movie in a theater, and seeing friends and family. I know the pandemic is not over, but at least we’re starting to see real improvements related to vaccination.
Vaccinations are now available for 12-year olds and up, and vaccine trials are underway for younger children at Children’s Hospital Colorado and other centers around the country. A group of researchers at ACCORDS are working with the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) to develop messaging aimed at increasing vaccination of young people and those in rural areas. As a physician scientist that has focused research on finding methods of improving immunization and other preventive care delivery and decreasing disparities in health and health care delivery, I hope you are vaccinated at this point. If anyone has worries about the vaccine, I’d be more than happy to discuss your concerns.
Looking out my office window, the weather seems to reflect the changeability and emotional rollercoaster of the current time. One day it looks like spring and the next it snows! Due to the rapid rate of vaccination, we seem to be on the cusp of COVID being behind us with hopes of soon being with friends and loved ones—while at the same time there are new COVID surges that make us fearful we will plunge back into the clinical nightmare many of us have lived this past year. While the buds are starting to come out, there is yet another mass shooting in Colorado, in a place where some of us were raised, went to school, or raised families. I remain so grateful to my ACCORDS colleagues for their support of one another and their energy and resolve to improve the health and quality of life for others. Our community continues to be very strong despite being physically distant at present. Thank you to all of you who keep the spirit of community alive at ACCORDS—with a special call out to the wellness committee! I am hopeful this summer or early fall we will be able to collaborate and celebrate in person at our current ACCORDS site prior to moving to the new building.
Autumn has begun, so hard to keep track of time. Still many pieces and parts rapidly moving as COVID-19 continues to evolve. I really miss seeing you all in conference rooms, the hallways, break rooms and stopping by to meet in your offices. Let's hope that will resume sometime in the near future!
Unreal. Surreal. Even these words seem deeply inadequate for the evolving COVID-19 pandemic and how it has transformed our lives. Many of us across campus are on the front lines, many called in to help, many feel helpless about how to contribute, and many having to rethink how we do our research during these difficult times. All of us collectively are focused on the fight to stop the spread of the virus and save lives.