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AIC Welcomes Dr. Robert Roose to Desmond Tutu Public Health Awareness Lecture Series

SPRINGFIELD — After a two-year hiatus, American International College (AIC) will continue its annual Desmond Tutu Public Health Awareness Lecture Series on Wednesday, April 6 from 11:30 a.m. tp 12:30 p.m. with “Can You Hear Me Now? Loneliness, COVID, and Social Connectivity,” presented by Dr. Robert Roose, chief medical officer and chief administrative officer for Mercy Medical Center.

Roose has been affiliated with Trinity Health Of New England since 2013, having also held the positions of chief of Addiction Medicine and Recovery Services and vice president of Behavioral Health at Mercy Medical Center. In his current role, he has led the health system through the COVID-19 pandemic, enhanced quality and safety, and facilitated operational improvements, demonstrated by achieving three consecutive ‘A’ grades from the Leapfrog Group, an organization advocating for patient safety and quality and transparency in healthcare.

“The School of Health Sciences at AIC is fortunate to have Dr. Roose accept our invitation to speak to our students,” Dean Karen Rousseau said. “While we often hear about the long-term physical effects of the COVID pandemic, healthcare professionals will also encounter the resulting long-term emotional and mental-health needs of patients. We are fortunate to have a tremendously adept individual in the community who can speak to these issues both as a physician and public health expert.”

During his time with Trinity Health, Roose spearheaded the expansion and renovation of opioid-treatment programs, developed new partnerships with community providers, opened a clinical stabilization service, and integrated addiction care into the hospital and Emergency Department with a goal of transforming care and improving operations to enable all people to receive high-quality care.

Previously, he served as director of Quality Improvement and medical director in the Division of Substance Abuse at Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, N.Y. Board-certified in family medicine and addiction medicine, he was named the 2013 Addiction Medicine Physician of the Year by the New York State Department of Health’s Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services.

While the in-person event is for AIC students in the School of Health Sciences, a Zoom link is available for members of the public-health community to attend remotely at no cost. To RSVP and receive the link, contact Kristi Gosselin at (413) 205-3565 or [email protected] by April 5.

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