Editor note: The following is a letter to the editor received this week from Dr. Thomas Quinn. (See March 19 Times “Tuning in to ‘Dr. Quinn, Medicine Man”)

Thank you very much for your email and for reaching out to me. I am sorry my response was delayed but we have been overwhelmed with the COVID-19 epidemic even here in Baltimore, although it is much worse in New York City and other places. Many of our colleagues (mostly health care workers) have been exposed to the virus and often are sick from it and thus there is a need to fill in when they are sick at home or isolating.

We have been averaging 100 patients or more in the hospital on a daily basis, and double that for the Hopkins Medical System, and usually 33 percent require intensive care and respirator support. This is just to say how busy we all are caring for these individuals, plus trying to keep up with the latest advances in diagnosis, treatment or prevention, not to mention the overarching policy implications of social distancing and shelter in place regulations.

My research activities are totally focused on the antibody tests to try to identify the magnitude of exposure in our communities, and to examine the role of antibody in both protection and therapy for some. I find this work very interesting as every day we learn something new about this virus and our response to it.

Thank you for your interest in our work and please stay safe!

All the best,

Thomas Quinn MD

Director, The Johns Hopkins Center for Global Health

Professor of Medicine, Pathology, International Health, Molecular Microbiology and Immunology, and Epidemiology

Johns Hopkins University