Brown Medicine HealthTalk Podcast: COVID-19 Update (Ep. 8)

Dr. Karen Tashima is a physician with Brown Medicine’s Division of Infectious Diseases. Additionally, she is a Professor of Medicine at the Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University.

Dr. Tashima was the principal investigator for two Gilead Remdesivir studies (the “Simple” Studies, for moderate and severe COVID disease) in the spring of 2020 in Rhode Island. These two studies enrolled 190 participants locally in a short amount of time. Dr. Tashima assembled a large team of investigators and research staff to support the enrollment of inpatients into the two studies. In the summer of 2020, she received an NIH grant to facilitate COVID19 vaccine trials in Rhode Island. Her clinical trials team enrolled 136 individuals in the Novavax vaccine study for adults. These individuals will be followed for 2 years. She is a member of a COVID study advisory group for Lifespan to vet new studies prior to IRB review.

She serves on the Rhode Island Governor’s appointed COVID-19 Vaccine Sub-Committee providing advice on use and equitable distribution of the EUA vaccines for the state. Dr. Tashima joined the Lifespan vaccine effort by serving on the Lifespan COVID-19 Vaccine Committee and volunteering at the Lifespan vaccine clinics. She provided COVID-19 vaccine information to providers in the region, appearing regularly on the RI DOH Provider Update calls, Lifespan Town Halls, TV news broadcasts, podcasts, on Zoom discussions with physician and community groups, and in newspapers to disseminate this information.