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IDSA Awarded Second CDC Grant for Continued COVID-19 Support for Health Care Workers

The Infectious Diseases Society of America and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have announced they will continue their collaborative effort to support frontline health care professionals caring for patients with COVID-19. The announcement coincides with the sobering news that the virus has claimed one in 500 American lives to date, and the delta variant is taxing many hospitals to capacity with unvaccinated patients.

The partnership between the organizations on this effort began in May 2020 and brings numerous medical specialties together to share resources and to provide the latest information and guidance on treating those infected with COVID-19 and preventing its spread. IDSA has been awarded a continuation of the COVID cooperative agreement and five additional cooperative agreements. Through this funding, IDSA experts support CDC’s clinical call lines, providing guidance to health care providers treating COVID-19 patients. The cooperative agreements have also funded the flourishing COVID-19 Real-Time Learning Network, an online center for frontline clinicians to learn, collaborate and share treatment best practices.

“The need for a central repository for the latest science, vetted by experts, has never been more critical. As infectious diseases experts we have worked side by side with our frontline health care colleagues, battling this virus for over 18 months. We continue our commitment to support them by providing information they can trust, that is continually updated and at their fingertips,” remarked IDSA President Daniel McQuillen, MD, FIDSA.

IDSA’s COVID-19 practice guidelines on diagnostics, treatment and management also receive funding through the grant. Additionally, under the partnership, twice-monthly clinician teleconferences provide health care professionals access to experts with the latest information on this rapidly evolving virus as well as an opportunity to ask questions. The calls frequently draw more than 800 attendees.

"During these very unpredictable, uncertain and challenging times of this COVID-19 pandemic the one guiding light and staunch, steady support for all of us clinicians have been the CDC/IDSA Clinician Calls. We are not only battling this viral pandemic, but we are also weathering the pandemic of misinformation. By providing accurate, scientific, and up-to-the-minute updates, the CDC/IDSA Clinician Calls have certainly helped us clinicians better manage our patients as well as disseminate accurate information. These invaluable sessions have helped us navigate through this pandemic with the assurance of consistent, quality data, vital and crucial guidance, as well as cutting-edge information,” said Dr. Gitanjali Pai, Chief Medical Officer, Oklahoma State Department of Health.

Medical societies represented in the advisory group informing the work of the Real-Time Learning Network are:

  • American Academy of Family Physicians
  • American Academy of Pediatrics
  • American College of Emergency Physicians
  • American College of Physicians
  • American Geriatrics Society
  • American Thoracic Society
  • Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society
  • Society of Critical Care Medicine
  • Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America
  • Society of Hospital Medicine
  • Society of Infectious Diseases Pharmacists

Under the newly awarded cooperative agreement of $3.66 million, each of these activities will continue along with additional projects focused on antimicrobial resistance, public health and workforce preparedness and surveillance. New projects include a pilot program that will develop tools to improve antimicrobial stewardship, funding for the Emerging Infections Network, an online professional network fostering surveillance for emerging infectious diseases, and two fellowships, one fostering the next generation of leaders in public health, epidemiology and antimicrobial stewardship and another supporting a joint infectious diseases and CDC Epidemic Intelligence Service fellowship program for ID physicians.

Among the activities included in the grant are:

  • Support and further development of the COVID-19 Real-Time Learning Network website
  • Rapid clinical guidelines development
  • Management of the weekly CDC/IDSA COVID-19 Clinician Call
  • Further development of the Disparities and Culturally Competent Care Toolkit
  • Continued production of COVID-19 podcasts
  • Pilot project on improving prescribing for community-acquired respiratory tract infections
  • Guideline implementation resources to improve antimicrobial stewardship
  • Emerging Infections Network
  • LEAP Fellowship & ID-EIS Fellowship

About the Infectious Diseases Society of America:
IDSA is a leader on issues of importance to ID professionals, including education and training, policy and advocacy, setting guidelines for patient care, and developing resources for clinical practice. It remains at the forefront of global health issues such as antimicrobial resistance and HIV/AIDS. Housed within IDSA is the HIV Medicine Association, (HIVMA) which represents medical providers and researchers working on the front lines of HIV. More than 12,000 IDSA and HIVMA members work across the United States and in nearly 100 other countries on six different continents.  For more information visit Follow IDSA on Facebook and Twitter.

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