Immunization and the Coming COVID-19 Vaccine December 9, 2020 6:00 PM to 7:00 PM

The event has ended. However you can watch the recording by clicking the button below:

Vaccine Webinar Recording


Immunization is a hot topic in the District. While we have seen good rates of flu vaccine acceptance, overall vaccination rates are still below the generally accepted herd immunity level. The debate over the Council's Minor Consent for Vaccinations bill shows anti-vaxxer talking points still resonate. 

The coming COVID-19 vaccine makes these issues even more important to discuss. Will the blow back against generally accepted vaccines make COVID-19 distribution harder? What should physician think about the COVID-19 vaccine when they are going to be the first people to receive it? How will distribution work?

MSDC has compiled a panel of knowledgeable physicians to discuss immunization in the District and what's coming with the COVID vaccine. Join us to have your questions answered and engage in a lively discussion.

Moderator: J. Desiree Pineda, MD, FACP. Dr. Pineda is the Immediate Past President of the Medical Society, as well as a delegate to the American Medical Association House of Delegates. She also serves on the DC Health scientific advisory committee for the COVID-19 vaccine.


LindaFu-HeadshotLinda Fu, MD, MS, is a general pediatrician at Children’s National Hospital and an Associate Professor of Pediatrics at George Washington University School of Medicine. Dr. Fu also serves as the Director of Academic Development for the Goldberg Center for Community Pediatric Health. Dr. Fu’s research and advocacy interests lie in improving understanding of and access to vaccinations through improving vaccine confidence and reducing systemic barriers to vaccination services. Over the years, she has provided evidence-based, vaccine delivery training to hundreds of pediatricians and college health professionals in over 40 states and DC through her leadership of immunization learning collaboratives. She led the first immunization learning collaborative to be approved by the American Board of Pediatrics to award maintenance of certification credit to participants. This program became a model for the American Academy of Pediatrics’ immunization QI curriculum. She is currently a member of the AAP’s Global Immunization Project Advisory Committee helping to develop a simulation curriculum to teach healthcare providers how to address vaccine hesitancy under diverse resource conditions. She also serves as chair of ImmunizeDC, a community coalition of diverse stakeholders whose mission is to improve vaccination in the District of Columbia. 

RETHY-HeadshotJanine Rethy, MD, MPH is the Division Chief of Community Pediatrics at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital and Assistant Professor of Pediatrics at Georgetown University School of Medicine. She serves as Medical Director for both the Kids Mobile Medical Clinic and FITNESS programs, Director of Medical Education for Community Pediatrics, and is a Co-Investigator and Clinical Lead for the MedStar Safe Babies Safe Mom’s Initiative.

 Dr. Rethy received her medical degree and MPH in Community Medicine from Mount Sinai School of Medicine and completed residencies at Mount Sinai Hospital in both Pediatrics and General Preventive Medicine.

Dr. Rethy serves as an American Academy of Pediatrics COACH (Childhood Obesity Advisor for Continuing Health). For the DC Chapter of the AAP, she serves as a CATCH co-facilitator and was recently elected as an at-large Board Member.  She believes that every child deserves the opportunity to be healthy and thrive and works to achieve that through an equity lens in her clinical work, health systems transformation, and her research.

SHAH-AnkoorAnkoor Shah, MD, MBA, is a general pediatrician and currently the Interim Principal Senior Deputy Director at the D.C. Department of Health. As Senior Deputy Director of the Department’s Community Health Administration (CHA), he leads the public health responsibility for improving health outcomes in the District across five broad areas: chronic disease prevention and control; perinatal and infant health; child, adolescent, and school health; nutrition and physical activity; and primary care access and quality.

During the District’s COVID-19 pandemic response, Dr. Shah has critically served in a myriad of functions, including advising reopening metrics, supporting safe functions within childcares, schools, and universities, leading COVID-19 Vaccine planning, and coordinating access to care among local health centers and hospitals.


Previously Dr. Shah was the Medical Director of IMPACT DC Asthma Clinic and a Community Pediatrician at Children’s National Hospital. In 2019 he was named to the 40 under 40 Leaders in Minority Health. He received his medical and public health education at Emory University and his MBA at George Washington University School of Business. He completed his residency and chief residency at Children’s National Hospital.