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Health Experts: COVID-19 Crisis Is Far From Over

States continue to reopen, but the COVID-19 pandemic is far from over, according to experts on Indiana Public Broadcasting’s All INtalk show. The experts discussed the current state of the pandemic and how state officials have responded — as well as the need for more data.

Indiana paused its phased opening plan as positive cases began to rise. Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis’ John Vest says there has been a resurgence in cases across the country and there is still active transmission in the community. Precautions to slow the spread of the virus need to continue, he adds. 

“We are still without a vaccine, so we are in a world of: What do you have to do to minimize transmission?” Vest says. “And that is: increase social distancing, wear face coverings, practice good hygiene, minimize large gatherings.”

Brian Dixon, director of public health informatics at the Regenstrief Institute and professor of epidemiology at IUPUI School of Public Health, says collecting race and ethnicity data on COVID-19 cases is challenging.

“We still have a good chunk of people who are getting tested that have an unknown race or ethnicity,” he says. “And that’s really important because one of the things that public health tries to do is monitor health disparities and work with community partners to address those disparities.”

All IN also spoke with Shandy Dearth, director of epidemiology education at IUPUI School of Public Health.

This story was produced by Side Effects Public Media, a news collaborative covering public health.

Darian Benson is a reporter for Side Effects Public Media and WFYI in Indianapolis. She can be reached at