Tune into WIVB-TV Channel 4 on Friday, May 22 from 3-4 pm to get your questions answered. The program will feature the following physicians. To get your questions answered send them to Ask4@wivb.com or call 716-204-8881.

Richard Charles MD
Dr. Charles is Chief Medical Officer for General Physician, P.C. and Chairman of the Physician Leadership Board of Optimum Physician Alliance. Dr. Charles is Board certified in Internal Medicine and has been in practice for more than 20 years. He graduated from both UB School of Pharmacy and UB Medical School summa cum laude graduate, completing his residency training with UB and its affiliated hospitals. In his practice, he focuses on chronic care management, incorporating specialty and nutrition providers, and pharmacy services. An Akron, NY native, Dr. Charles is active in his community and an entrepreneur, who owns and manages Dairy Queens. He’s published several articles and received many awards. Dr. Charles is an integral member of the team of doctors and nurses who are meeting the challenges associated with responding to and coordinating the care of COVID-19 patients. A significant change in his practice due to COVID is having to adapt to new ways of providing care to patients through telephonic and video visits, and even having his nurse practitioner provide in-home care visits when necessary. See More at https://www.gppconline.com/richard-charles-md/richard-charles-md-in-the-news/meet-your-doctor-richard-charles-md

Brian M. Murray MD
Dr. Murray is the Chief Medical Officer of ECMC, facilitating interaction among medical staff, hospital administration, and ECMC’s governing board to ensure our patients get the very best care. He is also an Associate Professor of Medicine at UB and focuses on nephrology in his practice. He is Board certified in Internal Medicine and Nephrology and is a fellow of the American College of Physicians and the Royal College of Physicians of Ireland. He has published numerous articles, served as reviewer for medical journals, received numerous awards, including the National Kidney Foundation of WNY’s Gift-of-Life Award, a BEST OF THE BEST award from the Niagara Health Quality Coalition for health care innovation, ECMC’s Distinguished Physician Award and is a member of the Board of Upstate New York Transplant Services. As ECMC’s Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Murray has played a central leadership role in the institution’s preparation and response to the COVID-19 pandemic. He maintains a direct liaison with the Erie County Department of Health Commissioner and is also directly involved with ECMC’s regular communication and interaction with federal and state health regulatory agencies. He is a leading member of ECMC’s COVID-19 Task Force, which was established in early March, and he conducts daily briefings related to the pandemic with ECMC’s medical/dental leadership. See more at https://www.ecmc.edu/our-doctors/brian-murray

Paul Shields DO
Dr. Shields is Vice President of General Physician, PC’s Post-Acute Clinical Care program. He is board-certified in family medicine doctor with more than two decades of experience and is a member of the American and Pennsylvania Osteopathic Medical Associations. Post-acute care refers to rehabilitative, nursing, or palliative care, and involves patients receiving care in nursing facilities, who require outpatient therapy, or care at home. When COVID-19 patients leave the hospital they are often transferred to nursing homes. The greatest challenge is separating COVID patients from the rest of the nursing home population. Working together with Elderwood and the Greenfields Continuing Care Community, Dr. Shields has been instrumental in becoming a model for WNY in succeeding in this. Both the Greenfields and Elderwood have established reconfigured space within their facilities to safely isolate and accommodate COVID-19 patients from the rest of the patient population. They have established separate entrances, hallways, have COVID-dedicated staff, a separate kitchen with disposable silverware, and even private locations where staff members can change out of their contaminated clothing before they leave the building. Dr. Shields can answer questions nursing home safety how to make patients and staff are kept safe to stop the virus’ spread. See more at https://www.gppconline.com/paul-shields-do.

Kenneth V. Snyder MD PhD
Dr. Snyder practices neurosurgery at UBNS in 2011 and is vice president of Physician Quality at Kaleida Health, where he is proud to work with the COVID-19 physician and administrative team, while also treating COVID-19 patients with stroke. Fellowship-trained in endovascular neurosurgery at UB Neurosurgery, Dr. Snyder was a research fellow at Barrow Neurological Institute and completed his neurosurgical residency at UB earning a PhD in biophysics. He specializes in treating brain tumors, spinal and peripheral nerve surgeries, aneurysms, strokes, and other neurosurgical procedures, including brain tumor, spine, and peripheral nerve surgery. Dr. Snyder has received numerous awards, including the Gold Humanism award for in Excellence in Teaching, has published extensively, and holds multiple patents. Over the past few months, he and his team have communicated with physicians all over the world who are also fighting this virus. As a result, he has a great deal to share from a local, national, and global perspective. Dr. Snyder is also very concerned about people not coming to the hospital out of fear of contracting the virus when they have serious symptoms associated with heart or stroke. He says people are dying in their homes because they are not coming to the hospital when, right now, because of the precautions being taken, hospitals are the safest place to be. He works closely with Dr. Hughes, the Chief Medical Officer at Kaleida in establishing testing for the community. He will want to talk about why safe personal distancing is important, what he is hearing from other physicians throughout the nation and the world to anticipate what will happen here both now and in the future and the role that we all play in keeping everyone safe. Learn more at https://www.ubns.com/physicians/kenneth-snyder-md. Also see https://www.kaleidahealth.org/kyi/news/?i=6381 and https://www.ubns.com/physicians/kenneth-snyder-md

Raul Vazquez, MD
Dr. Vazquez is the president and founder of G-Health Enterprises along with his wife Toni Vazquez. G-Health encompasses Urban Family Practice, Greater Buffalo United Accountable Healthcare Network (GBUAHN) and Greater Buffalo United Accountable Care Organization (GBUACO). A graduate of UB Medical School and Fordam University in the Bronx, Dr. Vazquez is a frequent presenter at various universities and a consultant to pharmaceutical companies on a variety of chronic diseases. His personal life experiences account for his concern for economically disadvantaged and at-risk communities of color. He has received numerous awards, serves on the Board of Directors of HEALTHeLink, and is a member of the New York State Minority Health Council and the statewide Multicultural Advisory Committee. G-Health conducts daily COVID-19 and IgG testing at the inner-city practice locations on Niagara Street and Jefferson Avenue, testing over 1,000 people. G-Health also makes us of a mobile unit to test people in their own neighborhoods, and a contract tracing model G-Health developed using three phone apps. Dr. Vazquez is particularly concerned about how the virus is disproportionally affecting people of color, who often have underlying chronic conditions that place them at a higher risk for the COVID-19 virus. He will also want to talk about the number of people he is seeing and testing in his own practice. See more at https://www.urbanfamilypractice.com/about/about/our-team.