Mayo Clinic Q&A

From complex or serious conditions like cancer and heart disease to the latest news on research and wellness, host Dr. Halena Gazelka asks the questions and gets easy-to-understand answers from Mayo Clinic experts

Most Recent Episodes

COVID-19 research task force
April 21, 2020

As the SARS-CoV-2 virus spread worldwide, a race began to develop testing protocols and ramp up research. Mayo Clinic's COVID-19 research task force is studying the virus, predicting hot spots, and working towards effective treatments and a vaccine.

On the Mayo Clinic Q&A podcast, Dr. Andrew Badley, chair of Mayo Clinic’s COVID-19 research task force, gives an update on COVID-19 research activities at Mayo Clinic. 

a smiling young woman, sitting in a sunny windowsill, sipping coffee and looking outside

How public health measures can help reopen the country
April 21, 2020

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, efforts are underway to find a new normal and begin to re-open the country and the economy. While people are eager for strict social distancing rules to end, public health measures, including testing and tracing for the virus, will be important tools needed to control the spread of the virus and prevent an uptick in new infections.

On the Mayo Clinic Q&A podcast, Dr. Gregory Poland, an infectious diseases expert and head of Mayo Clinic’s Vaccine Research Group, discusses the steps needed to reopen businesses, schools and other activities as the fight to control COVID-19 continues.

Mayo Clinic Laboratories launches serology testing
April 20, 2020

A new serology test from Mayo Clinic Laboratories is being used to identify the presence of immune response to SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. The serology test is intended only to detect antibodies to the virus. It does not diagnose recent or active infection. Mayo Clinic Laboratories also offers a molecular test to diagnose very recent or active infection. Both tests are important tools in the pandemic response. 

On the Mayo Clinic Q&A podcast, Dr. Elitza Theel, director of Mayo Clinic’s Infectious Diseases Serology Laboratory, explains why serology testing is initially focused on identifying people in areas where potential immunity is key, including front-line health care workers.

a young woman sitting in bed in a dark room, with her eyes closed tying to sleep holding her hand on her forehead, perhaps suffering from insomnia, sadness, depression or stress

Managing stress and anxiety during COVID-19 pandemic
April 17, 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic has forced changes to daily life, and disrupted normal routines at work, at school, and at home. Physical isolation can negatively affect mental health, and constant news coverage can bring fear and anxiety about the disease. How can you best cope in these uncertain times?

On the Mayo Clinic Q&A podcast, Dr. Craig Sawchuk, chair of the Division of Integrated Behavioral Health at Mayo Clinic, shares helpful tips and strategies on managing stress and anxiety during the pandemic.

How contact tracing can fight the spread of COVID-19
April 16, 2020

Contact tracing is a used to slow community spread of infectious diseases like COVID-19. Contact tracing is the process of finding and reaching out to the people who have been in contact with an infected person. Then close contacts of a person who might have COVID-19 can be isolated or quarantined to lessen further spread of the virus. 

On the Mayo Clinic Q&A podcast, Dr. Gregory Poland, an infectious diseases expert and head of Mayo Clinic’s Vaccine Research Group, explains contact tracing and discusses other current news related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Research disclosures for Dr. Gregory Poland.

Critical care units prepare for COVID-19
April 15, 2020

An intensive care unit (ICU) is a special unit in a hospital where patients who are very ill can be under constant supervision by their health care team. The COVID-19 pandemic has stressed ICU and critical care units in hot spots where the virus had spread widely.

On the Mayo Clinic Q&A podcast, Dr. Daniel Brown, director of critical care medicine at Mayo Clinic, discusses how critical care units have prepared for COVID-19.

Understanding COVID-19 testing
April 14, 2020

There are two types of tests for COVID-19, and it is important to understand the difference. The first type, a diagnostic test, is used to find out if you are actively infected with the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes COVID-19. This test typically is done as a nasal swab. The second type of test is a serologic test to determine if you had a recent infection of SARS-CoV-2 and now have antibodies against the virus. This test is done through a blood sample. 

On the Mayo Clinic Q&A podcast, Dr. Gregory Poland, an infectious diseases expert and head of Mayo Clinic’s Vaccine Research Group, explains the need for two different tests and how they will help move recovery from the pandemic forward.

Research disclosures for Dr. Gregory Poland.

an out of focus blurred picture of an emergency ambulance crew

Emergency medicine in the time of COVID-19
April 13, 2020


Emergency medicine is a specialty that prides itself on a mantra: anyone, anything, anytime. The COVID-19 pandemic has put emergency health care providers and first responders on the front lines, fighting the spread of the virus and caring for critically ill patients.

On the Mayo Clinic Q&A podcast, Dr. Annie Sadosty, a Mayo Clinic emergency medicine physician, discusses when patients should come to the emergency room, how to safely care for people with COVID-19, and how teams at Mayo Clinic are collaborating during the pandemic.

a pregnant woman with her partner, husband, father of baby placing his hands on her stomach in the shape of a heart

Pregnancy during the COVID-19 pandemic
April 10, 2020

COVID-19 is the disease caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus. Because SARS-CoV-2 is a novel coronavirus, researchers are still learning how the virus affects the body. And this raises questions for pregnant women. Can COVID-19 affect pregnancy? Is breastfeeding safe? How can a pregnant woman protect herself from the disease?

On the Mayo Clinic Q&A podcast, Dr. Nipunie Rajapakse, a pediatric infectious diseases specialist, will discuss COVID-19 and pregnancy.

News briefing with Dr. Poland
April 9, 2020

On the Mayo Clinic Q&A podcast, Dr. Gregory Poland, an infectious diseases expert and head of Mayo Clinic’s Vaccine Research Group, covers the latest news on the COVID-19 pandemic.

Dr. Poland discusses why the U.S. has reached its deadliest week during the pandemic, and how clinical trials and vaccine research are underway to prevent future outbreaks.

Research disclosures for Dr. Gregory Poland.