Posted: June 23, 2020

COVID-19 Research Task Force


The Problem: Clinicians have only limited evidence to guide patient care for the rapidly evolving/spreading novel coronavirus disease COVID-19. This scarcity of real-time information in a time of great need has been compounded by a shortage of research staff due to staff illness, furlough, or inability to conduct research due to increased clinical responsibilities. The personal and systemic demands introduced by COVID-19 has challenged research systems in expanding the limited available clinical knowledge.

Our Approach: Medical students answered the call to remotely support research by volunteering for various COVID-19 research projects. Students and faculty collaborated to organize a central communication hub from which students were recruited and organized into teams. Student volunteers responded to research opportunities posted by faculty, assisting with tasks ranging from remote data management to literature review to document preparation. Students worked primarily in teams while coordinating with each other and faculty. In this collaborative research model, students have participated in data analysis, protocol development, quality improvement, and research development to address real-time clinical questions and improve patient care at Prisma Health.

Institutional/community partners:

  •  University of South Carolina School of Medicine Greenville Medical students
  •  Prisma Health
  •  Clemson University School of Health Research (CUSHR)

Participation: Volunteering medical students 


Emily-Rose Zhou, B.S., University of South Carolina School of Medicine Greenville,

Project Category

Non-clinical support

Mode of Participation


Credit Status


Project Type

Non-clinical support


Research, Students, Medical, Quality improvement, Volunteers, COVID19, Patient centered outcomes