Open Mics with Dr. Stites 6-8-22

Media Resources

Jill Chadwick

News Director

Office: (913) 588-5013

Cell: (913) 223-3974


The University of Kansas Health System is seeing a slight increase in COVID numbers, treating a total of 19 COVID patients today, up from 15 Monday. Other significant numbers:

  • 14 with the active virus today, 9 Monday
  • 4 in ICU, 2 Monday
  • 0 on ventilator, 0 Monday
  • 5 hospitalized but out of acute infection phase, 6 Monday

Key points from today’s guests:

Dr. Kellie Wark, infectious disease specialist, The University of Kansas Health System

  • Monkeypox was originally discovered in monkeys, but it is not spread by monkeys
  • It can be spread by contact with lesions or via respiratory droplets
  • Many cases are being found in men who have had sex with other men
  • There is a vaccine for monkeypox, but the general public doesn’t need it at this time
  • Avian flu or bird flu outbreaks have killed many birds across Europe and the U.S.
  • It can be transmitted to humans through fluids, but there’s only been one case diagnosed in the U.S.
  • Symptoms are similar to the regular flu
  • Those who are around birds on farms or backyard fowl would be more susceptible
  • Tick-borne infections can be serious with a number of different types of diseases – Bourbon virus, Heartland virus, etc.
  • Best way to prevent tick-borne infections is to wear proper clothing, use insect repellant and check your skin for ticks when coming in from outside

Dr. Dana Hawkinson, medical director of Infection Prevention and Control, The University of Kansas Health System

  • New data overnight from Moderna shares new information about a new version of the COVID vaccine – a booster shot that may be ready by fall that doubles the antibodies offered by the current vaccine
  • Pfizer is also working on an updated vaccine for fall
  • The CDC said that about 82 million COVID vaccine doses were wasted from December to mid-May
  • The COVID vaccine for children under 5 is still targeted for availability in the next couple of weeks
  • Monkeypox has now been detected in countries globally
  • Monkeypox symptoms initially appear as flu-like, but then expand to swelling of lymph nodes and skin rashes
  • The CDC raised its alert for Monkeypox to Level 2

Dr. Phil Johnson, chairperson of Radiology, The University of Kansas Health System

  • There is a current contrast dye shortage impacting certain radiology procedures that should be over soon
  • It was caused by supply challenges due to COVID
  • The Health System should be close to regular schedules in July
  • One of the things we’ve realized is having large single-source suppliers can result in issues if that supplier has any problems in shipping 
  • Hospitals will be reviewing just-in-time supply strategies vs. having higher stockpiles
  • The goal is to avoid any patient frustrations with delayed or re-scheduled tests

Friday, June 10 at 8:00 a.m. is the next live Morning Medical Update. June is Pride month and the program will cover how the Health System is a health equity leader.

ATTENTION: media procedure for joining:

Zoom link:

Telephone Zoom link: 1-312-626-6799, meeting ID: 782 897 8628

TVU Grid link: UoK_Health_SDI

Restream links:

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