More experts from UW–Madison available to discuss COVID-19

April 3, 2020

Numerous experts from the University of Wisconsin–Madison are available to discuss the impact of COVID-19 and provide tips and information to help people navigate the challenges to their daily lives. More experts can be found at experts.news.wisc.edu and in these previous tip sheets:

March 27

March 23

March 17

March 12


3D PRINTING TO FILL THE MEDICAL EQUIPMENT GAP

Tim Osswald is a professor of mechanical engineering and an expert on 3D printing. The technique, Osswald says, can be used to help fill immediate needs in producing critical medical equipment that’s in short supply.

“In this crisis, 3D printing is a perfect fabrication technique to manufacture spare parts for equipment where not a large number of parts are required. For example, splitters can be easily 3D printed,” Osswald says. “A splitter transforms a ventilator so it can be used on two or more patients. On a larger scale, 3D printing can be used to manufacture swabs, however not at a rate high enough as can be done with injection molding. That said, many hospitals have a shortage of swabs, and 3D printing them is an immediate fix. One can potentially print 500 swabs per machine per day.”

Contact: tosswald@wisc.edu

Lennon Rodgers, director of the Grainger Engineering Design Innovation Lab, can discuss his work designing a DIY face shield for UW Hospital after learning the hospital’s personal protection equipment supplies were running low. Rodgers can discuss the role of DIY products in the fight against COVID-19.

Contact: lennon.rodgers@wisc.edu

USE OF CHLOROQUINE HYDROXYCHLOROQUINE TO TREAT COVID-19

Mary Hayney, a professor in the School of Pharmacy, is available to discuss the use of chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine in the treatment of COVID-19. Hayney is an expert on vaccines and emergency preparedness and the immunization of immunosuppressed individuals.

Contact: mary.hayney@wisc.edu; Twitter: @mshayney

ECONOMIC IMPACT ON RURAL ECONOMIES AND SMALL BUSINESSES

Steven Deller is an expert on economic growth and development and a professor in the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences. He is available to discuss the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the Wisconsin economy and rural and small economies in general, as well its impact on small businesses.

“Many state and federal agencies are looking to a range of strategies to help small businesses through the difficulties associated with COVID-19,” Deller says. “Small business owners and managers should monitor the news for information about these rapidly developing programs.”

Contact: scdeller@wisc.edu

COPING WITH THE LONELINESS OF SELF-ISOLATION

Karen Smith, a postdoctoral scholar in the psychology department and an expert on how people respond to stress, can offer strategies for managing the loneliness of self-isolation, and can discuss the potential health and behavioral impacts of stress and the perception of stress during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Contact: kesmith23@wisc.edu  Twitter: @smith_ke

THE 2020 CENSUS: ITS IMPORTANCE AND COVID-19 ADJUSTMENTS

The 2020 Census is underway, and with it comes the prospect of new data that will affect funding, infrastructure and political representation for communities of all sizes. Dan Veroff, a distinguished outreach specialist with the Applied Population Laboratory in the Department of Community and Environmental Sociology and the UW–Madison Division of Extension, has coordinated the Wisconsin State Data Center (a membership network partnering with the U.S. Census Bureau) for the last 20 years.

He can provide updates on the plans and schedule for the 2020 Census, including some important changes in the way data is being collected and some operational and timing adjustments resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic. Veroff can also discuss other logistics related to the 2020 Census, the importance of an accurate and complete count of the population, and the primary uses of census data for apportionment, redistricting, funding, and planning for services and emergency preparedness.

“I think of the decennial census as both a civics lesson and an easy opportunity for everyone to have a voice in the future of their communities. Complete and accurate census counts are critical for political representation, for making sure that our communities get the funding they need, and to help plan for services and needed infrastructure, such as roads, schools and hospitals. In my role with Extension, census data is also at the heart of telling the story of communities and helping to shed light on important population changes — such as aging, increasing diversity, and patterns of growth or decline in rural Wisconsin.”

Contact: (608) 265-9545 (please leave a voicemail), (608) 347-4048, dlveroff@wisc.edu

Note: With lead time, Veroff can prepare comments or interview materials in Spanish.