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Healthology Symposium

Where science, practice and social interests meet

Healthy Diversity

with focus on family, nutrition, mental health and ability

March 14, 2024 | time to be announced

This symposium is a call for public awareness and professional action.

The goals of our Healthology Symposium are expressed in this video.

Keynote Speaker

Kirstie Ennis
U.S. Marine Corps Veteran, Adventure Athlete, Coach, Philanthropist, Speaker

Kirstie Ennis was severely injured when her helicopter crashed in Afghanistan. After more than 40 surgeries, including the amputation of her leg, the former Marine sergeant responded to her challenge. First competing as a Paralympic snowboarder and then venturing into mountaineering, she has now set out to climb the Seven Summits while raising funds and awareness for a variety of causes.

The Kirstie Ennis Foundation is a nonprofit sponsoring mobility-based equipment and providing therapeutic climbing clinics for disabled, veteran and minority communities. Kirstie is an ambassador for the nonprofit Building Homes for Heroes and is on the board of Merging Vets and Players.

Ennis has completed three Master’s degrees (Human Behavior, Business Administration and Public Administration) and is currently completing her doctorate in Education. She was the recipient of the 2020 ”Higher Ground Award” at the Salute to Greatness Awards held by the Martin Luther King Jr. family.

Kirstie is the youngest ever to be inducted into the International Sports Hall of Fame and was the recipient of the ESPY’s 2019 Pat Tillman Award. Ennis’ story, giving people hope and building community, is featured on the cover of ESPN The Magazine’s “Body” issue, appears in People magazine, was featured on the Tamron Hall show and in a Sports Emmy nominated segment on HBO’s Real Sports.

The School of Health Sciences is delighted to welcome Kirstie Ennis to Oakland University as the keynote speaker for the 2024 Healthology Symposium.


Healthy Diversity


in Family

Presenters to be announced

  • Embracing the broad range of family characteristics
  • Keeping all families healthy in every stage of life
  • Strengthening communities through diverse families, who welcome differences, collaboration and learning

in Nutrition

Presenters to be announced

  • Finding healthful aspects in the food of different cultures
  • Appreciating food as key to cultural heritage and identity
  • Promoting diverse diets with a variety of foods to increase intake of different vitamins, minerals and nutrients

in Mental Health

Presenters to be announced

  • Recognizing mental health shapes perspectives
  • Creating inclusive environments improves wellbeing
  • Realizing the connection between physical and social participation, and mental health and wellbeing

in Ability

Presenters to be announced

  • Promoting inclusive environments where all abilities thrive
  • Emphasizing self-awareness for sensitivity and flexibility
  • Appreciating the value of diversity in welcoming all physical, cognitive and social-emotional abilities

For questions, please contact:

Sarah Brown, Director of Philanthropy
(248) 364-8798 | sarahbrown@oakland.edu

Title and Event Chair Sponsorship (2 available): $12,500

  • Kickoff and introduce event from podium
  • Reserved VIP seating for six people
  • Corporate or individual name displayed on program, listed on website, included in electronic invitation and on all marketing materials
  • Recognition from the podium and logo displayed at event
  • Display table during networking break and poster session (optional hosting opportunity)

Keynote Speaker Sponsorship (1 available): $10,000

  • Introduce keynote speaker at podium
  • Reserved VIP seating for four people
  • Corporate or individual name displayed on program, listed on website, included in electronic invitation and all marketing materials
  • Recognition from the podium and logo displayed at the event
  • Display table during networking break and poster session (optional hosting opportunity)

Dinner Sponsorship (2 available): $7,500

  • Corporate or individual name listed at each table sitting on special menu
  • Reserved table seating for six people
  • Corporate or individual name displayed on program, listed on website, included in electronic invitation and all marketing materials
  • Recognition from the podium and logo displayed at event
  • Display table during networking break and poster session (optional hosting opportunity)

Culinary Demonstration Sponsorship (2 available): $5,000

  • Introduce demonstration from podium
  • Reserved VIP seating for four people
  • Corporate or individual name displayed on program, listed on website, included in electronic invitation and all marketing materials
  • Recognition from the podium and logo displayed at event
  • Display table during networking break and poster session (optional hosting opportunity)

Presenting Speaker Sponsorship (2 available): $4,000

  • Introduce speaker at podium
  • Reserved VIP seating for four people
  • Company or individual name displayed on program, listed on website, included in electronic invitation and all marketing materials
  • Recognition from the podium and logo displayed at event
  • Display table during networking break and poster session (optional hosting opportunity)

HALL Award Sponsorship (1 available): $3,000

  • Brief video presentation before awards presentation
  • Reserved VIP seating for four people
  • Company name displayed on program, listed on website, included in electronic invitation
  • Recognition from podium and logo displayed at event
  • Display table during networking break and poster session (optional hosting opportunity)

Dean’s Circle: $2,500

  • Reserved VIP seating for two people
  • Company name displayed on program, listed on website, included in electronic invitation

Leadership Donors: $1,000

  • Company name displayed on program, listed on website, included in electronic invitation

Make checks payable to Oakland University and mail to: Human Health Building, Rm. 3148
Attn: Sarah Brown
433 Meadowbrook Rd.
Rochester, MI 48309-4452

Donate online:

Mission: Where science, practice and social interests meet, the Healthology Symposium celebrates impactful collaborative approaches for addressing upstream social determinants of health in achieving better downstream care. Our focus rotates annually among four departmental themes.

Vision: More than promoting quality health care, we envision a true health system of collaborative leadership and inter-professional pursuits — sharing goals, challenges, and solutions to promote the public good — growing healthy communities mind, body and "soil".

 Through research and engagement, Healthology enables students, faculty and community partners to make meaningful connections, affecting positive change and impacting the needs of citizens within the campus community and beyond.

The goals of our Healthology Symposium are expressed in this video.

Building a Foundation of Health through Lifestyle Behaviors
Celebrating Interdisciplinary Health Sciences

Thursday, March 23, 2023 | 2-8 p.m.

Our 2023 Symposium focused on Interdisciplinary Health Sciences: nutrition to prevent, treat and reverse disease - physical activity to benefit health - and social support to improve physical, mental and emotional wellbeing. 

Keynote: Kim Williams, M.D.
Department Chair - University of Louisville Department of Medicine

Dr. Kim Williams has over 40 years of experience as an educator, researcher and clinician focused on advocacy for nutrition, national and international health care disparities, health care delivery, and advanced access to cardiac imaging. He is the founder of the Urban Cardiology Initiative in Detroit, which aimed to reduce ethnic heart care disparities, and is the founding editor-in-chief of the International Journal of Disease Reversal and Prevention. As an internationally recognized speaker, Williams focuses on preventative cardiology and synthesizing data on cardiovascular risk and mortality due to nutrition.

Lifestyle Medicine Overview: Beth Frates, M.D.
Assistant Clinical Professor, Harvard Medical School

Dr. Frates is a pioneer in lifestyle medicine education and an award-winning educator. Her passionate teaching style has earned her several Excellence in Teaching awards for work in multiple pre-clinical courses, covering topics including nutrition, the musculoskeletal system, the central nervous system, the endocrine system and an introduction to the medical profession. Additionally, Frates excels in working one-on-one with clients. Through establishing personal connections, she identifies what they need to make progress in adopting healthy lifestyles. Frates believes in the power of implementing realistic small changes to create big results.

Culinary Demonstration – Sarah Martin, M.S., R.D. (Coordinator and Special Instructor, Oakland University
Professor Martin was joined by Chef Kevin Peasgood (Chartwells, Oakland University) and Kevin Beers (OU Athletics’ Announcer) to kick off the 2023 Healthology Symposium with a culinary demonstration. In this engaging activity, participants tried their hand at creating a delicious, plant-based meal. Professor Martin highlighted the importance of simplifying healthy eating and emphasized that everyone is capable of this. She encourages people to start by taking small steps towards a more healthful diet, such as adding a plant-based recipe into a meal plan.

Physical Activity and Health – Melissa Jones, Ph.D. (Assistant Professor, Oakland University)
Dr. Jones reviewed health benefits of physical activity and suggested ways to make a lasting behavioral change. A key takeaway is that any amount of physical activity is beneficial to health. Dr. Jones encourages people to find an activity they enjoy; schedule time, ideally with a friend to hold each other accountable; prepare in advance; conduct the activity; and also identify sedentary times with strategies to reduce them.

Peer-to-Peer Support: Caring Communities Matter – Christina Papadimitriou, Ph.D. (Associate Professor, Oakland University)
Dr. Papadimitriou explained that peer-to-peer support directly benefits and protects wellbeing. Emotional and informational support offers empathy, reciprocity, compassion and self-advocacy. Steps to take to improve caring communities include support for meaningful engagement and the sharing of infrastructure, space and skills. Furthermore, advocacy, empowerment, access to care, disability pride and care management are promoted by including peers with disabilities in the health care team.

Plant-Based Diets and Health – Melissa Reznar, Ph.D., MPH (Associate Professor, Oakland University)
Dr. Reznar’s presentation provides an overview of the standard American diet versus the health benefits associated with a whole-food, plant-based lifestyle. Dr. Reznar encourages people to take the journey to healthier eating step by step: identify and keep plant-based meals you already enjoy in your meal rotation, give your favorite recipe a plant-based makeover, and begin discovering delicious plant-based foods to improve your health and add something new to your lifestyle.

Advancing, Restoring and Maintaining Physical Function
Celebrating Human Movement Science

Thursday, May 12 and Friday, May 13, 2022

Our 2022 Symposium focused on Human Movement Science: the prescription of movement to impact social determinants of health - movement as medicine to manage pain - and energizing community through movement science.

Keynote: Angela T. Moore

Angela T. Moore is an integrative health expert, keynote speaker, radio personality and business owner. She is a master trainer, performance enhancement specialist, corrective exercise specialist and fitness nutrition specialist through the National Academy of Sports Medicine, as well as a nationally certified counselor and limited licensed professional counselor. Moore provides integrative health assessments; mental, nutritional and physical health programming; educational webinars; interactive workshops and empowerment coaching to individuals, community and corporate groups. She is also a health and wellness blog contributor for A Healthier Michigan, and hosts the Empowered radio show on 910 AM.

Beyond COVID-19: Igniting Innovation in Health

Thursday, November 12, 2020

Our virtual event focused on the creative solutions developed across different health sectors in response to the unique challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic. The pre-recorded program video shared stories of diverse health leaders who, through creative problem-solving and fortitude, have adapted and responded to the public health crisis in the face of adversity, turning challenges into opportunities.

The livestream video was followed by a series of networking chat rooms:

• Solutions for Population Health Through Virtual Care: Elevating the visibility and importance of telehealth. Co-hosts: Dr. Gina Buccalo & Dr. Brian Fedoronko.

• Achieving Equity for the Future: Addressing social determinants and removing barriers to health outcomes. Co-hosts: Dr. Jennifer Lucarelli & Telva McGruder.

• Emerging Health Care System Models: Embedding best diagnostic sciences within patient-focused care. Co-hosts: Ewa Matuszewski & John Waugh.

Transcript 00:03 Speaker 1: The coronavirus pandemic challenges us like never before. But in every crisis, lies great opportunity. Amidst this profound disruption and uncertainty, professionals in health continue to tackle unique problems with resilience. We continue to adapt, turning obstacles into the catalyst needed for transformation. From the delivery of care to addressing health equity and providing support for critical community needs, we are re-thinking processes and implementing creative solutions at an accelerated pace. Today, we come together to share diverse perspectives and bold ideas; to learn, innovate and strategize for a new era, to inspire a positive change in purpose, for health. 01:05 Diane Wolfenden: On behalf of Priority Health, we are proud to serve as this year's presenting sponsor. Healthology aligns with our unwavering mission to improve health, inspire hope and save lives, because we believe all people deserve access to quality affordable care. We know that real change is possible through team work with community partners across our state to achieve better health, and especially among the most vulnerable populations. We are pleased to introduce this year's program, which focuses on navigating a new reality beyond COVID-19 and implementing innovative solutions in health moving forward. 01:49 Kevin Ball: Good evening. We are pleased you are joining us. While we would have certainly wanted to get together in person, the ongoing public health crisis has created challenges, but also offers new opportunities. And so, we are joining you today through this virtual method. This is as important a moment as ever to come together, especially during this unprecedented time in our history. I am both humbled and honored to be a part of the Oakland University School of Health Sciences, which provides an engaging and inclusive environment of collaborative academic and clinical learning to over 2000 undergraduate, masters, doctoral and post-professional students. Every day, our dedicated faculty and staff empower students to confront health challenges, improve patient outcomes, research global crises, and collaborate with community partners to lead change. Healthology is one example of the collaborative learning methods we value in our school, enabling students and faculty to make meaningful connections with our community to improve the lives of those we serve across our campus and beyond. 03:02 Kevin Ball: Now, it is my distinct privilege to introduce the president of Oakland University, Dr. Ora Hirsch Pescovitz. As a renowned physician and researcher with more than 30 years of experience leading change in academic health centers and universities, she is a champion for higher education, health care, diversity and women's issues. Our university community is truly fortunate to have her leadership as she is committed to ensuring all students have the opportunity to live, learn and thrive in a safe and welcoming learning environment. 03:38 Dr. Ora Hirsch Pescovitz: Thank you, Kevin, for that wonderful introduction. And thank you for being such an ardent advocate for improved health for all people and for all communities, and of course for your great work leading our School of Health Sciences and for transforming our students into leaders. And welcome to Healthology, a virtual symposium where science, practice and social interests meet, and where we can ignite innovation in health. And welcome to Oakland University. We know that you're attending the symposium with a sense of purpose, and we hope that you will leave with a sense of momentum and a renewed commitment to join us in effecting positive change. 04:31: Now, more than ever, those of us who are dedicated to positive steps toward vibrant health for all people and all communities must think and act innovatively, and this means addressing upstream social determinants of health to achieve better downstream care. We meet virtually at a time of the greatest public health threat in our nations and our world history. 05:08: During this crisis, I have been so appreciative of the courage, determination and hard work of frontline health professionals who have taken on the challenge of protecting all of us during this global pandemic. The deadly COVID virus has upended all facets of our lives and has exacerbated health inequities, revealing a lack of fairness and preparedness. Many of you are dealing daily with these stark realities, and I look forward to hearing the stories of creative problem solving, fortitude and how you have turned challenges into opportunities. 05:57: Clearly, we must have a coherent and strategic national approach to address the virus spread, yet we must be equally committed to identifying the people and the communities that are being most impacted. Through collaboration, we can design and implement solutions to bring about greater public good. While there's uncertainty about the future, we must continue to engage in conversations that connect theory to best practices in purpose for health. Together, each of you who are here today at Healthology represents collective and relentless determination, and I have no doubt that the sharing of our expertise and best practice stories will itself provide encouragement and inspire us to be ever more resilient and more resourceful. Thank you. 07:12 Kevin Ball: Thank you, Dr. Pescovitz. Our program would not be possible without the generous support of our sponsors. We are especially grateful to Priority Health for serving as this year's presenting sponsor. Continued partnerships foster our long-standing tradition of celebrating impactful research with community engagement that effects health outcomes, ultimately creating educational opportunities for our students who become future leaders in health. I am honored to introduce one of those leaders to you now. Samantha Carson earned both her undergraduate and graduate degrees from the School of Health Sciences. She is a member of the 2017 Master of Public Health class. Samantha is a practice coach and quality improvement strategist at MedNetOne Health Solutions. She is one of several high-performing graduates of the Master of Public Health program, leading multiple initiatives at MedNetOne Health Solutions. This organization has played a key role in the formation and ongoing support of our Healthology series. 08:18 Samantha Carson: Thank you, Dean Ball. As a student, I learned the importance of impacting the health needs of our communities through diverse wellness and health-related practices. Every day I apply the skills I gained in my career as a health professional. MedNetOne Health Solutions is proud to sponsor Healthology 2020. It gives me great pleasure to introduce my mentor, Ewa Matuszewski, CEO and co-founder of MedNetOne Health Solutions, and a chair of the Oakland University School of Health Sciences, Board of Advocacy and Resource Development. 08:55 Ewa Matuszewski: Samantha, thank you for that introduction. In purpose for health, this virtual gathering today is an affirmation of our collective commitment to the foundational purpose of Healthology, sharing industry best practices to cultivate a community culture that drives upstream population health. On behalf of the Board of Advocacy and Resource Development, I thank you for your participation. My fellow board members and I are honored to support and advocate for the school's programs, activities and related educational experiences for students and professionals. By engaging business and community leaders and utilizing our extended networks, the board aims to increase the school's visibility, foster partnerships and expand opportunities for students, faculty and alumni. We support transformative, interprofessional learning and innovative outcomes, and work collaboratively to build on the already strong reputation of the School of Health Sciences. 10:03 Kevin Ball: Thank you, Ewa. We are extremely grateful for your leadership and for the unwavering support of our entire board, many of whom you will hear from this evening. These knowledgeable and dedicated individuals graciously volunteer their time and energy to help advance our school's mission. They are engaged, effective advocates, and we greatly appreciate their insight, guidance and expertise. And now I am pleased to present this year's dynamic program, which showcases compelling stories of a diverse group of health leaders through a series of interviews. 10:41: So, let's start by describing how COVID-19 affected the delivery of services to your stakeholders and to the people you serve. Take us back to March. What was going through your mind? 10:54 John Waugh: COVID-19 had a profound impact on our stakeholders and our delivery system. I watched news reports in the Johns Hopkins tracker for the novel coronavirus and all of the cases were over there, they were in China, it was Italy that was on fire. Then it became the Pacific Northwest, and then on the evening news, we watched the map of the US states begin to turn red and creep towards Michigan. This was something very different from the Ebola virus that we had prepared for, but really only had a few cases. 11:23: We needed to detect a new virus that we had not seen before, and we were confident we could do it, but the FDA would not allow laboratories to develop their own test. We had to use a CDC-developed test, which was tapping problems at the time, and on February 29th, FDA lifted the ban, and 15 days later, we had a test. It's now Monday, March 16th, and at Henry Ford Hospital, we launched the first test for SARS-CoV-2, the coronavirus, which causes COVID-19 disease. It's a laborious multi-step DNA RNA tests, and we can only perform 288 a day, and we knew that we would soon need to be able to perform thousands and possibly millions of tests. With these capacity limits, we had no choice but to prioritize and test in-patients, emergency department patients, healthcare workers to get them back online and first responders. 12:21 Margaret Dimond: Oh, mid-March when I heard the word COVID, I didn't realize that it was the beginning of a nightmare for healthcare and society. The pandemic, when it hit really upended all of our services at the hospital. The Governor had an order that our OR was basically shut down for elective services for the safety of the patients and the staff. Our OR nurses had to be redeployed to the ICU because the ICU filled up with ventilators and COVID-positive patients. We had to re-allocate staff to our general medsurg unit and create a COVID unit. Our ER, we had to have tents because people were coming in droves for screening, we couldn't handle them in our regular OR physical space. It was chaos, and we had to take that chaos and try to see how we could organize it. 13:23 Reyna Colombo: One of the biggest challenges that we had to do was to close all of the ambulatory rehab clinics within the Bowman system. Another challenge that we had to do was the increased influx of patients that had COVID and the need for us to re-assess the environment and to meet all of the new regulations from the CDC and of course, the infection regulation control regulations that we have within our hospital. These two areas were very significantly affected the operations of the department. 14:07 Telva McGruder: So March 2020 came at us and we were watching what was going on overseas and paying very close attention. I was leading facility management for General Motors at the time, and as we were observant, we realized that this was going to move a lot faster than we expected. We were seeing how our counterparts in China were dealing with the impact of the pandemic, and we quickly started marshaling resources to figure out what we needed to do. From our perspective, our install base in North America is much larger than what we have in China, and so we had many facilities to consider, and more importantly, many, many people. And the number one priority was, how do we keep people safe? And what we did was we worked on communication, when we were going to tell people to go home or ask people to continue to working at work, we had to make sure that we were doing that well. And then we focused on the right processes, the right knowledge from CDC and others, and really depended on the experts to make the best decisions so that we could increase our cleaning capabilities and things like that with the number one intention to keep people safe and make sure they understood why we were having to do such drastic things with their lives. 15:28 Gina Buccalo: So for the UAW Retiree Medical Benefits Trust, our first concern was to ensure our 620,000 members across the country had access to timely and needed healthcare. Our members, of whom 83% are over the age of 65, are considered high risk for COVID-19, just based on age alone. At the onset of COVID, our members were immediately impacted, their regular care was disrupted. We were concerned about access to emergency care. Therefore, we were challenged to find new avenues of information for our members to secure access to care, especially for our most vulnerable members, notably those, for example, in the middle of a care cycle, such as a scheduled surgery or an upcoming chemotherapy treatment. 16:18 Ewa Matuszewski: What an unbelievable period of time, we went through March the 15th, the Ides of March, the day Julius Caesar was killed, and now we are facing a pandemic that we thought was going to end in a very short period of time. That very next day, we had to shut down our own company, staff was told they would be working from home, and we started calling our physicians, 900 of them, to find out what they needed, what support we could provide them with, and we discovered very quickly, they did not have sufficient PPE, they did not have sufficient funding to actually pay for their payroll that week, many of them were in a situation where they didn't have money for their own leases, they had vehicles they had to pay for, and suddenly they were left with nothing. So it was up to organizations like ours to make sure that they did have sufficient funding and sufficient support for the next few weeks. 17:24 Angela Moore: I think about when I woke up on March 16th and I was informed that my studio was going to have to be closed, and I knew at that point the business was not going to be the same, and that I was going to have to close the doors, but what I did not want to do was close the doors to the programs and offerings that I provided my clients, so within a couple of days, I had already sent emails to all my clients with very detailed information on how we were going to continue with providing the programs and services online. I also provide a very detailed list of discount equipment that they could purchase, so they continue their exercise programming at home. And then I also contacted my mental health clients and my nutrition coaching clients, and let them know that we would continue, it was just going to be done virtually, and that I was going to be there to support them and provide them the continued service and quality of service they expected. 18:20 Brian Fedoronko: Immediately, it was a very unusual time, very disruptive, because people were not getting the care that they needed to get. So their healthcare is really important to us, they were not getting any services. They couldn't go to hospitals, they couldn't go to doctors' offices, which is a complete disruption for our business, so immediately we tried to figure out what can we do to sort of circumvent those issues, and one of the issues that came up right away was that we could offer virtual visits. And so we started to move toward offering free virtual visits right away for our members so that they could get access to healthcare when they needed it, because we know they weren't going physically into places to get it done. So we are trying to support our providers by doing that, our members... We sent our team members home or personal employees home, and had them work from home so that they were safe too. 19:19 Katie Pring: Our clinic is an outpatient orthopedic, physical and occupational therapy clinic. On a given day, we see up to 130 patients and can have up to 20 employees working in one office. So when March came, we really didn't understand COVID, and our first thing was, how do we keep our patients safe, how do we give them effective care, how do we keep our staff safe? A lot of anxiety was going on, so we quickly started brainstorming on how can we do social distancing, how to keep our clinics safe, how to keep our patients coming in and understanding the signs of symptoms of COVID and how to keep everyone calm. 20:06 Darryl Hill: Around March 12th I woke up, and as the pandemic scenario was unfolding, it was certainly a riveting moment where I had to assess the situation with my colleagues at FirstGroup of America transportation services company, and my immediate thought and reaction is, "How are we going to safely transport the tens of thousands of student passengers on a daily basis within the school districts that we serve?" So my immediate reaction is, "What is the team that I had to engage, the colleagues," because we interface with the public, we operate in almost every state in the US and every province in Canada, so it was really just assessing the situation and think about our ultimate customers, our student passengers, and really how we was going to address this unfolding situation. 21:08 Jennifer Lucarelli: As a department chair at Oakland University, I was able to see how the university responded to the Coronavirus pandemic from multiple levels. First and foremost, we were concerned about keeping everybody safe on campus, and so Oakland University moved very quickly to close campus and moved to an online format. In health sciences, we have students that are in clinical placements within the Physical Therapy program, we've got students in our clinical and diagnostic Sciences program who are in labs every day that are working side by side looking in microscopes and analyzing specimens, and then we have students who were just used to that face-to-face class format. And so we saw very quickly students and our faculty having to shift into entirely new delivery models. 22:02 Kevin Ball: A few weeks have gone by. It's April. How did you adapt and respond to the challenges? 22:10 Margaret Dimond: McLaren, Pontiac or McLaren, Oakland responded very quickly to the challenges. It's interesting because our corporate offices were not responding as quickly and nimbly we were so almost... Sometimes there was a rub in terms of which policies to follow, but we were trying to put our patients and our staff first, and we, through Oakland County, were able to get personal protection equipment, masks and gowns and so on that our other McLaren sister hospitals were not. We are also very fortunate that for GM and other donors were bringing masks, were bringing gowns. I remember actually getting a call from St. Joe Oakland, which is a competitor, and they were out of PPE, so I drove boxes over to them because at that time, we were trying to really get to a normalcy of how we're going to create a structure to fight the crisis of COVID. 23:14 John Waugh: Information changed so fast that we had six conference calls per day, seven days a week. Some of those conference calls had over 400 online. Every day seemed like a Monday. Personal protective equipment is in very short supply, we wanted to put masks on all patients and staff, but if we did, we would run out of masks in two days. The blood supply was also falling dangerously short because of the Stay-At-Home order and people were not out donating blood. Five days later, we heard the announcement that our health system was at maximum inpatient capacity. We worked with the Army National Guard to convert TCF arena, the former Cobo Hall, into a 250 to 1,000 bed field hospital. For our laboratories, the arena was a temporary extension of Henry Ford Hospital. We went on to close outpatient clinics, suspended elective surgeries and furloughed 2,800 staff. This would preserve personal protective equipment and reduce crowding and waiting areas. Hospitals are usually a mix of medical and surgical spaces, and we converted nearly all to medical. We were one giant ICU. On April 3rd with over 400 on a conference call, we heard our first bit of good news. Today we've taken more patients off ventilators than we put on ventilators. 24:34: Our hospital president called me to say, "John, your testing has made a world of difference, we can now get patients on the right drugs for patients within 24 hours." And she was talking about remdesivir, anti-interleukin 6, hydroxychloroquine and steroids. All of our tests were completed in less than one day, most under 12 hours, and with every discharge from the hospital, they played the Journey song, Don't Stop Believing over the intercom. I made a decision to double test 80 Army National Guard members assigned to TCF arena, so they did not have to undergo a 14-day quarantine. That turned out to be a good decision because 10 days later the dams broke in Midland and Sanford Lake, and the National Guard had to go in there and lend a hand. 25:19 Reyna Colombo: We had to adapt very quickly to these new challenges within our department. For example, in the ambulatory side, we had over 300 therapists that we needed to now move from their traditional roles into new functions and new roles either within the department or within the hospital. In the acute care area, we also needed to retrain some of our therapists that were accustomed to treating patients who were free from COVID to now patients that were infected with COVID. So that was a very important role for the educators within the department who had to develop new training material, to teach therapists that were coming from the ambulatory side, and also to teach the therapists that were treating in acute care new ways of treatments. 26:15 Katie Pring: So to adapt, we started different tiers, we started a telehealth tier for patients where we got them into therapy electronically, virtually. We had a track of where patients were still able to come into the clinic, and so we had to have protocols on social distancing, cleaning policies, as well as educating our patients when they should and should not come into the clinic. We had to redo, rethink how we delivered our care. 26:50 Darryl Hill: How we adapted and responded to these challenges at FirstGroup is that we had to ensure that we properly educated our workforce. In particular, our professional operators, our drivers, we had to look at that population being an at-risk population because over two-thirds of our drivers are in that at-risk category, 60 years and over. So we had to really evaluate and reassure them based upon the data, the best practices of the CDC, the World Health Organization, that we was going to ensure their safety and well-being as professional operators. And additionally, we also had to ensure that the safety of our student passengers, we had to work closely with our school district, so we assembled a cross-functional team to evaluate every possible scenario and then develop those appropriate standard operating procedures. 27:54 Kevin Ball: This public health crisis exposed and exacerbated healthcare inequities and a lack of local preparedness. Please tell us about that. 28:03 Ewa Matuszewski: So within a very short period of time, we discovered that the local health departments were really ill-prepared to support physician groups and to even support the community, and if you pushed it even further, health systems were really ill-prepared to assist the smaller physician community and the patient population. So what we needed to do is step up to the plate to figure out ways in which to support not just the physicians, but also to support those that may have been at risk, and were not able to receive the type of support that they needed. The perfect example was when we began receiving lab fees, identifying individuals that were positive COVID, and we would reach out to them only to discover that in many instances, they didn't have food or they didn't have medication, they were unable to go ahead and treat their own family appropriately, so we began sending packages to them with diapers, with pulse oximeters, with hand sanitizer and PPE, and that continues to this day. 29:13 Brian Fedoronko: The inequities in healthcare existed well before the COVID crisis, but I think what it did was it really exposed the inability for our system to handle any healthcare crisis like this. The very fragile network that we did have wasn't sufficient for a crisis like this. One of the things that we noticed right away was an increase in behavioral health needs due to the social isolation and the crisis that was happening, and all the social factors to go with it, behavioral health became a major issue, so we've seen behavioral health claims go way up, services go way up. We started to offer free behavioral health visits virtually, so that we could provide that need, and that's something we wanted to do right away. It doesn't address all the needs, but it addressed that one really important one right away. 30:08 Katie Pring: So I work in outpatient orthopedic physical therapy, but my specialization is in Women's Health, pelvic flora and working with women with pre-imposed natal care, and during the pandemic or in March, a lot of those patients who are pregnant or just recently had a baby, they were too left behind, and they were scooted out of the hospitals and they were discharged home, and in many cases, they were isolated and had very little resources. And in our practice, we were able to bridge that gap by offering Telehealth services and being able to connect with these patients and provide the healthcare that they needed and answer their questions and help them with their isolation that they were feeling. 30:56 Jennifer Lucarelli: What we saw from a local perspective was an issue for everybody to stay home and stay safe to prevent the spread of Coronavirus because we didn't quite know how it was spread from person to person, and that was our best case scenario to slow the spread and keep people safe. But for low-income members of our community, that was impossible when they were trying to feed their families, they're relying on fragmented emergency food systems that are full of rules and eligibility and just really impossible schedules to keep straight, and so what we saw on the ground was families having to go to multiple locations just to make sure their family had an adequate diet. 31:37: The first thing that we see when somebody loses their job and as soon as schools shut down is they don't have enough resources to purchase food, and so they end up going to a local food bank where they might get three or four days’ worth of food, they have to visit the local school systems, which really responded quickly to try to get kids fed, but oftentimes we're requiring families to go there three or four, even five days a week to get a couple of meals for their kids. And it still wasn't enough. Forcing our most vulnerable populations still to go to the grocery store, use their limited resources and put themselves at risk for Coronavirus exposure. So while we're telling everybody to stay home and stay safe, they're going out five or six times a week to try to just meet their nutritional needs. 32:24 Kevin Ball: What opportunities arose as a result of this pandemic? 32:30 Angela Moore: Well, it was really interesting a couple months into the pandemic as I noticed that the obstacles that I had with the physical location I no longer had virtually, so clients that would have difficulty getting to the studio work-related, not being able to get to the studio afterward due to traffic, not having to deal with the stress of traffic, also the cost that was associated with traveling to the studio had essentially been eliminated. So what I found was that the people that I was providing services to, they were relaxed, [chuckle] even though we were in stressful times, and so that was really great. I also was able to cater to people outside of my normal demographic radius, so I was able to extend my services to people that did not live in close proximity to studio. In fact, I was training a client in Mexico and Texas. Different locations like that, so definitely opportunities arose out of chaos. 33:33 Gina Buccalo: Regarding prescriptions, we moved quickly to improve access to medications through a prescription drug readiness plan. Throughout COVID, and in more than 16 states where we had declared areas of emergency, we relaxed requirements to access prescriptions when members were not able to connect with their physicians for renewals. We monitored request for drugs that were in the news, hydroxychloroquine, asthma medications, and azithromycin to name a few. We wanted to ensure that members who needed those medications were able to get them, but we also wanted to keep national supplies in check. We noted and increase in the use of mail order services, we know that male is a safe way for members to access their medicines and can improve long-term medication compliance. 34:22: We updated our communications and we provide direct assistance to members to help make it easier for them to use mail refill services. We improved access to telehealth services across the country, and now have made it a permanent benefit. Throughout COVID-19, we saw a dramatic increase in the use of telehealth services as a safe alternative to traditional care. 34:46 Telva McGruder: As we were leading through the pandemic, all of us were adjusting, particularly as leaders in a very large organization, we were trying to figure out how to lead well, and one of the biggest opportunities that arose was for us to improve our ability to lead with empathy. And as a large manufacturing company at General Motors, we do lead with empathy, but this was another level of empathy, and another level of understanding, seeking to understand how the decisions we were making were impacting all of the individuals in our spectrum of responsibility. And given the different responsibilities that individuals have, we had to think differently about what people need, not only from a technical, professional level, but from a personal level. We really had to pay attention and make sure our solutions were innovative enough to get us there, and from that we realized that we had more disparity in the way we were relating to people in leadership than we were comfortable with, and out of that partly was born my new position, which is the Chief of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion for the company, where we have absolutely ramped up our efforts to lead with empathy across the organization. 36:00 Darryl Hill: There were several opportunities that arose at FirstGroup of America. After we implemented our strategies and standard operating procedures, we did learn that as an organization, that we had a great opportunity to leverage preventative health measures and look at strategies where we could partner with healthcare providers and even our insurance providers to have a strategic approach to work-life balance, as well as the best health measures for our workforce. So we looked at corporate initiatives that we convey to our workforce to really reassure them once again, that it's best to be preventative, as opposed to, as we say, hierarchy controls and safety and health to wear your mask and practice social distancing, which is very important, but if we can get ahead of the curve and practice sound preventative health measures that we're taking a more proactive approach for our workforce, for our employees. 37:11 Kevin Ball: How will you and your organization implement innovative solutions moving forward? 37:16 Telva McGruder: It's great to be at a point right now where we can look forward from COVID-19, even though we're still in the middle of the pandemic, what we're realizing is that there is a future in front of us, and that the future looks a lot more flexible than the past that we were living in. We're focused on flexibility of life for employees that are inside of the company when they're at work, but also when they're at home, we have a lot of people working at home. 37:39: And so we're innovating new solutions, we're helping them figure out how to keep themselves healthy at home, we're integrating health and well-being, and all of the considerations we're making going forward much more than we ever have in the past. We're looking at upstream care for those that are working at work, making sure we focus on their upstream care and their ability to give themselves assistance upfront and early from a medical perspective. And that is really exciting for us as leaders to consider, along with the technical innovations we've seen coming out of COVID-19 and making sure that those stick in terms of how to handle people's technical needs on an ongoing basis and being more agile. 38:22 Reyna Colombo We have to be able to assume many different roles within our organization, including those that are outside our own traditional rehab setting, including, for example, we might have to develop therapists that are only doing virtual telehealth, or developing the materials to teach and train patients, as well as teams that can direct care at the patient's home. 38:56 Margaret Dimond: So looking at the first wave of COVID taught us many lessons, and so we took the summer to plan and to do... Just as if you have a disaster, you do disaster preparedness. And really that's what we're doing. We have teams that are focused on, for instance, our OR nurses going up to the ICU, they didn't even know how to chart on the EMR because it was just different, they hadn't been on an inpatient unit for years, so looking at how do you redeploy staff in an effective manner, how do you do on-the-job training? What types of equipment do you need and where are they on the unit? This created a chance for us to do process improvement, to really look at equipment deployment and to look at human resources. And what we need, when we need it, at a very critical time. I think if COVID comes back as it did, I think we'll be so much better prepared and the staff will be more knowledgeable. 39:56 Gina Buccalo: COVID-19 has certainly accelerated the need for more intense care that can be delivered at home. Care for conditions such as acute exacerbations of chronic lung disease, congestive heart failure, or even a course of intravenous antibiotics, care that previously would have required a trip to the emergency room or even a hospitalization can now be done safely and effectively in a home setting. We are ready to help our members gain access to COVID-19 vaccines and treatments as soon as they are approved and available. And we continue to promote the use of mail order prescriptions as a safe and cost-effective way for members to stay on track with their medications. Finally, we are evaluating solutions to keep members connected with family, friends and caregivers. Throughout this crisis, we have seen how important these connections are to help our members address the social isolation and mental health needs that COVID-19 pandemic has certainly intensified. 40:58 Angela Moore: The Body Principle will continue to provide mental, nutritional and physical health services to clients online, and then we will do it in person when it is deemed safe to do so, and any adjustments that need to be made as situations arise, we will adjust accordingly. The great thing is that we see that we don't have to stop providing those services and offerings. Another thing that's been really great is I've done a radio show for several years called Empowered, that airs on 910 AM Superstation every Sunday from 1:00 to 3:00 PM. That has been a wonderful, a wonderful platform because not only was I able to interview medical professionals during the COVID-19 pandemic that provided education as well as resources that was beneficial to people through the COVID-19 pandemic. I now am able to continue to interview medical professionals, wellness professionals, physical health professionals, that allow me to provide resources as well as support to help people continue to be safe and healthy through the COVID pandemic and beyond. 42:01 John Waugh: With regard to COVID testing, we understood that the international supply chain was disrupted and really broken, and we were all competing for the same available supplies. We did better than most because we developed five different testing methods on 17 different test platforms. We continue to test in under 24 hours compared to commercial labs, which take four to 14 days and you can't do contract tracing when it takes that long to get a lab report back. Many of the rapid methods that you've heard about had problems with 20% false negative results, and we've heard about these problems. So now we test hotspots which flare up in nursing homes and with first responders, and in communities, we work with businesses, six universities, including Oakland University, we work with college and professional sports teams and some local school districts. So through it all, we've learned a lot, we've accomplished a great deal, and we have a playbook for going forward. We can test thousands of samples a day, we're confident, but we're still concerned this virus is still out there and influenza season is upon us. 43:06 Jennifer Lucarelli: So from an educational perspective, Oakland University has done a number of things to make sure that a high quality education remains accessible to the student population. We have seen a lot of our classes go into an online or a hybrid format, some of our classes are offered synchronously so you can be talking with your professors and your classmates in a virtual room at the same time, but we know that that model also doesn't work for everybody, especially when they have job and caretaking responsibilities. And so there are asynchronous opportunities available as well. We've also able to implement the highest public health protocols to make sure that as students are returning to campus, that they're being kept safe, our classrooms are down to a reduced capacity, and we've used our biggest rooms available on campus for those classes that still do benefit from meeting face-to-face, and then we've implemented safety precautions in our labs to make sure students can stay at least six feet apart. We've also seen them go back into clinical settings in a very safe manner, and then we've also seen some scheduling changes with some of the physical therapy practicals, where students need to be able to demonstrate certain skills, and so the innovative approaches have allowed Oakland University to continue successfully providing a high quality education. 44:32: Well, one of the unexpected opportunities that we've seen as a result of the coronavirus pandemic was the opportunity for students to engage in service learning with real world projects happening in the community. In Oakland County, the My COVID Response Network was able to bring together over 70 partnering organizations to work to deliver food to the community together, and so we were able to streamline delivery and increase the number of families served, so that we are providing direct delivery to the most vulnerable populations of food and supplies to about 1,000 households per week. And that is something that has not been achieved by any other organization in the local community. And so this collaborative network response to the infectious disease pandemic can serve as a national model for other organizations looking for how to bring the community together to respond and just achieve increased efficiency and customer satisfaction, and so we're just thrilled that students have been able to take advantage of that educational opportunity, completing practicums and independent research projects with our organization. 45:45 Kevin Ball: We've enjoyed working with each of our participants in putting together this presentation. And of course, we thank our generous sponsors for their support and partnership in making an important difference in the lives of our students and faculty, both educationally and by reaching communities to create impact. For further conversation, let us now turn to our virtual networking chat rooms. To join, please open your browser and visit www.oakland.edu/shs/community/healthology. If you are interested in supporting healthology and the School of Health Sciences, please click on the Support Our work button. Finally, I thank each of you for attending today's program, your participation is helping us lead the way toward better upstream health and better downstream care in our schools, communities and in our world. Thank you for joining us in purpose for health.

BETTER upstream Health, BETTER downstream Care:  It takes a team

Celebrating Clinical and Diagnostic Sciences
Tuesday, April 30 and Wednesday, May 1, 2019

Keynote:  Michael Laposata

Michael Laposata, M.D., Ph.D., is Professor and Chair of the Department of Pathology at the University of Texas Medical Branch-Galveston. He developed an innovative method of systematically interpreting clinical laboratory data and eliminating guesswork by creating diagnostic medical teams, or DMTs. The teams are a collaborative approach, with pathologists, clinical laboratory scientists, expert physicians and others, designed to offer healthcare professionals assistance in selecting appropriate diagnostic tests and interpreting results for individual patients. Dr. Laposata spearheaded DMTs at several institutions, including Vanderbilt University, with data showing improved patient outcomes, shorter hospital stays and reduced health care costs.

Dr. Laposata is the recipient of 14 major teaching prizes at Harvard, the Massachusetts General Hospital, and the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. In 2016, in the international journal The Pathologist, he was identified as the most influential pathologist in the United States, and the third most influential pathologist in the world.

BETTER upstream Health, BETTER downstream Care

Celebrating Public and Environmental Wellness
Tuesday, April 17 and Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Keynote:  Rishi Manchanda

Rishi Manchanda, M.D., MPH, is founder and president of HealthBegins, a social enterprise that provides training, clinic redesign and technology to transform health care and the social determinants of health. Dr. Manchanda is a dual board-certified internist and pediatrician, a board member of the National Physicians Alliance, and a fellow in the California Health Care Foundation’s Healthcare Leadership program. He is the lead physician for homeless primary care at the VA in Los Angeles, where he has built clinics for high-utilizer homeless veterans with complex chronic disease.

Dr. Manchanda was the first director of Social Medicine and Health Equity at a large community health center network in south Los Angeles. In 2008, he started RxDemocracy, a nonpartisan coalition that has registered over 30,000 voters in doctors’ offices and hospitals nationwide. His 2013 book, “The Upstream Doctors,” introduces a new model of the health care workforce that includes clinical upstreamists who address social determinants of health. In 2014, Dr. Manchanda was recognized in The Atlantic magazine as one of 20 leading health care innovators in America.

Transcript Healthology is, its slogan is ‘Where science, practice and social interest meet.’ Those words were carefully chosen because we do wanna focus on the science, we do wanna focus on the practice in terms of changing health and we want it to be social. Social for fun but social in the context of being concerned about social needs and social care for people. I think that slogan captures that. I think Healthology is actually, it’s really an old story that is finally coming full circle, it’s finally showing up in the realms of maybe the information and maybe just passion about it and maybe the current state of health care is finally reaching a point where in our country and globally we decided it’s time to think about an ounce of prevention. And so for me, that is the most exciting part about it, is this idea that you are bringing all walks of life, all disciplines and trying to truly find ways to leverage that into action. The speed at which we’ve gone from a focus on sick care to health care to health at the community level. That spectrum over the past ten or fifteen years has really picked up and it’s really picked up globally. It’s real exciting to see. So what I bring to Healthology I think is the experience of working at the intersection of health care, public health and the social determinants of health and the ability from that experience to kinda bare witness to what I think this moment represents and what Healthology is kinda been able to accomplish which is making people realize that the ability to move upstream, to address social determinants, health and health care is not only necessary but it’s possible. More and more payers across the country are realizing that we’re in a really skewed scenario, collectively we have decided as a country that we will spend less on social services compared to health care, right? And that makes us an anomaly compared to our peer countries where they spend the exact opposite. And there’s no surprise therefore that you have a doctor talking to you about how to move upstream is because that’s where it's coming, folks. It’s coming to us downstream because we haven’t invested upstream yet. And so for that reason a lot of payers who are now seeing the cost of this are saying ‘Woah, wait wait.’ As we move toward value, away from volume, we need to look at drivers of value and one of those drivers of value is social determinants. If there’s a handful of people, that they found one person that is in the trenches with them, one advocate, one person that kinda gets it and empowers them to kinda maybe have a buddy or someone they can reach out across a different state. It’s one of the greatest things. When I think about what people can take from this event, it’s that sense of momentum, that sense of ability to make change. Momentum doesn’t happen in a linear way, right? It’s not like today will lead to some action directly tomorrow. Momentum comes from taking the ideas, the conversation, the connections that today brought and then making sure that those ideas leads to something, some action and thats a reflection really of what healthology was able to accomplish here. We’ve created a conversation that is not just a professional conference but a, kind of a dinner table feeling. It’s been personally fun just to be part of these conversations.

Healthy Pontiac, We Can!  An Interdisciplinary approach to Community Health

Celebrating Interdisciplinary Health Sciences
Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Keynote:  Jennifer Lucarelli

Jennifer Lucarelli, Ph.D. is the community chairperson of the Healthy Pontiac, We Can! Coalition, which aims to increase healthy eating, physical activity, and tobacco-free living in the Pontiac community.  Since its formation in 2011, Healthy Pontiac has grown to include over 40 partnering organizations, has received state and federal grant funding to support nutrition and physical activity environment, policy, and program initiatives in a variety of settings.  Dr. Lucarelli employs both qualitative and quantitative research methodology and values the use of community-based participatory research in which community partners are involved in all aspects of the research study.  Dr. Lucarelli aims to translate findings into policies, programs, and environmental changes that will directly benefit the community.

Sarah Brown
Director of Philanthropy
School of Health Sciences
(248) 364-8798

Janice Eaton
Coordinator of Graduate and Community Relations
(248) 364-8699

School of Health Sciences

Academic Advising
3070 Human Health Building
433 Meadow Brook Road
Rochester, MI 48309-4452
(location map)
(248) 370-2369

Dean's Office
Human Health Building
(248) 370-3562

School of Health Sciences

Academic Advising
3070 Human Health Building
433 Meadow Brook Road
Rochester, MI 48309-4452
(location map)
(248) 370-2369

Dean's Office
Human Health Building
(248) 370-3562