Communication Builds Our Community

AdventHealth Officials Note Continued COVID-19 Decline

About 300 people are hospitalized May 20 across AdventHealth's Central Florida hospitals, part of a recent "continual decline," said Dr. Steven R. Smith, chief scientific officer, on AdventHealth Morning Briefing.

"Vaccinations are getting in arms and that's protecting us all from COVID-19," Smith said on national Clinical Trials Day, a fitting tribute to the doctors and volunteer patients who participated in trials at AdventHealth that helped bring the vaccines to market.

Smith noted there are hundreds of clinical trials underway at AdventHealth related to cardiovascular health, brain health, metabolism, cancer and pediatrics.

Dr. Rohit Bhatheja, Medical director of cardiovascular services at AdventHealth, said more than four dozen trials are underway related to heart health, including procedures that help clear heart blockages without open heart surgery.

"Today's patients are benefiting from the technology because someone else volunteered their time yesterday," Bhatheja said.

Karen Corbin, PhD., an investigator at the AdventHealth Translational Research Institute, is focused on learning more about how the human gut microbiome relates to, or perhaps even causes, obesity and other conditions.

"The gut microbiome is one of the real reasons we're all so unique," she said.

The institute, which features the kind of resources and equipment more often found at a university, serves as a hub of research in the region with specially engineered rooms that can precisely measure how many calories participants are burning and, for the first time in humans, how many calories are expended related to methane gases produced in the gut.

Smith said 250 people are employed in research at AdventHealth with more than 500 studies underway at any given time.

"This is a little economic engine in the middle of Central Florida," Smith said.


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