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Have questions about coronavirus? Tune in to Tampa’s town hall

USF experts and Tampa Mayor Jane Castor will answer questions from the public.

A panel of experts from the University of South Florida along with Tampa Mayor Jane Castor will host a virtual roundtable discussion Thursday evening about the coronavirus.

Community members are invited to tune in and ask questions of the panelists. The event, at Busch Gardens, will be presented on Facebook from 7 to 8:30 p.m.

They’ll first discuss advances in COVID-19 vaccine development and deployment, as well as lessons epidemiologists have learned about the virus, according to a news release by USF Health. Their talking points have been prepared by USF faculty and students involved in global health and infectious diseases research.

A question-and-answer session will take up the last 30 minutes, with audience questions selected by John Adams and Tom Unnasch, infectious disease experts at USF Health.

The panelists from USF include Dr. Kami Kim, a professor of internal medicine concentrated on infectious diseases and international medicine; Edwin Michael, a professor specializing in epidemiology and population ecology of disease transmission; and Michael Teng, an associate professor and expert in immunology and vaccine development.

Event organizer and moderator Lynn “Marty" Martin, a professor and disease ecology expert at USF, said the town hall comes at the perfect time, just as flu season meets increasing rates of COVID-19 infections.

Related: Flu season, coronavirus are about to collide. How Tampa Bay can prepare.

"It is more important than ever to heighten public awareness and understanding of best practices for COVID-19 mitigation,” he said in the news release. “This event will serve to educate the public about current science and policy for this virus and provide a forum for participants to ask their own questions to the experts.”

To access the town hall, visit the USF College of Public Health Facebook page.

Correction: An earlier version of this story listed the incorrect title for Lynn “Marty” Martin, a professor and disease ecology expert at USF.

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