Dentists and dental school faculty volunteers across the state are making an impact as healthcare workers become involved in vaccine rollouts. The Arthur A. Dugoni School of Dentistry, in partnership with the San Francisco Department of Public Health, is doing its part, playing an important role in speeding up the distribution of COVID-19 vaccines in the community.
The school began providing vaccines to students, residents, faculty and staff on January 30 as allowed by local health guidelines. The initial vaccines were allocated to those involved in the dental and audiology healthcare programs on the San Francisco campus.
The vaccine rollout was a collaborative effort involving many of Pacific’s healthcare programs, including the Dugoni School of Dentistry, the Thomas J. Long School of Pharmacy and the School of Health Sciences. Pharmacy, physician assistant program and dental school faculty, as well as dental student and staff volunteers, were involved in the organization and launch of the vaccine distribution.“We are proud to have the Dugoni School family step up to help face and end this pandemic,” said Dean Nader A. Nadershahi ’94.
In early January, the California Department of Consumer Affairs issued a waiver that allows dentists to administer vaccines authorized by the FDA after completing a short training program. As additional vaccine supplies became available in February, the Dugoni School of Dentistry opened up appointments to the professional dental community and the wider public.
Pandemic Creates New Research Opportunities
Restrictions related to the pandemic prevented the Arthur A. Dugoni School of Dentistry from conducting many of its scheduled on-campus research projects in 2020. However, the dental school has launched several new research projects directly related to COVID-19, including measuring aerosol generation during procedures; tracking the prevalence of SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus in different populations and the effect of the pandemic on dental school patients; and testing the effect of various medications on COVID-19.
Visit pacific.edu/dental/research for more information about the research initiatives.