Profile

Jessica Malaty Rivera, MS

Science Communication Lead at The Pandemic Tracking Collective

Jessica Malaty Rivera is an infectious disease epidemiologist and science communicator. She earned her MS in Emerging Infectious Diseases from the Georgetown School of Medicine and has dedicated the last 15 years of her career to disease surveillance research, public health policy, and vaccine advocacy. Her specialty is in translating complex scientific concepts into impactful, judgment-free, and accessible information for a diverse audience. She is currently the Science Communication Lead for The COVID Tracking Project at The Atlantic, a researcher with the COVID-19 Dispersed Volunteer Research Network, a research affiliate at Boston Children’s Hospital Innovation & Digital Health Accelerator, and an expert contributor for NBC Bay Area and CNN. Jessica  was recently named one of the World’s 50 Greatest Leaders by Fortune Magazine for her work on COVID-19 research and data communication. Between her day jobs and being a full-time mother to two little kids, she also dedicates several hours a week to promoting science literacy and debunking misinformation on social media.

Authored Content

  • Nov 10 2022
    Blog Post The Increasing Burden of Dengue Fever in a Changing Climate When most people think of climate change, they envision melting icebergs and a rising sea level. While climate change is indeed warming the globe and causing the seas to rise, that is not the only detrimental effect. Disruption of weather patterns can include stronger and more frequent storms, droughts, wildfires, extreme flooding and heat waves. […] Jacqueline Houtman, Jessica Malaty Rivera, Jonathan Gilmour, Lindsey Shultz, Rebecca Glassman, Samuel V. Scarpino
  • Aug 25 2022
    Blog Post There’s Something in the Air: Monitoring Indoor Air for SARS-CoV-2 Public health decisions about Covid-19 depend on knowledge about the level of SARS-CoV-2 circulating in a community. Clinical data obtained from individuals through nasal swab samples is crucial, but with a decrease in case reporting, in part due to increased home testing, the data needed to estimate disease prevalence is becoming less reliable. As an […] Jacqueline Houtman, Jessica Malaty Rivera, Jonathan Gilmour, Kaitlyn Johnson, Lindsey Shultz, Rebecca Glassman
  • Apr 05 2022
    Blog Post A User’s Guide to U.S. Vaccine Breakthrough Rates With the United States over a year into its vaccination campaign, all eyes right now are on Covid-19 rates broken out by vaccination status—measures of the number of Covid-19 cases, hospitalizations, and deaths per 100,000 vaccinated or unvaccinated individuals. Shared by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) as well as many state, […] Dave Luo, Jacqueline Houtman, Jessica Malaty Rivera, Jonathan Gilmour, Kaitlyn Johnson, Kara Schechtman, Leo Wolansky, Lindsey Shultz, Rebecca Glassman
  • Mar 25 2022
    Blueprint Variants, Sublineages, and Recombinants: The Constantly Changing Genome of SARS-CoV-2 During the course of the Covid-19 pandemic, numerous variants of SARS-CoV-2 have emerged. Some have died out, and some have surged globally. They are all SARS-CoV-2, but they differ in important ways. Think of them as the boughs of the SARS-CoV-2 family tree, each of which has branched off into many smaller limbs. The smaller […] Dave Luo, Rick A. Bright, Jacqueline Houtman, Jessica Malaty Rivera, Jonathan Gilmour, Lindsey Shultz, Samuel V. Scarpino
  • Feb 16 2022
    Blueprint Tracking SARS-CoV-2 and Its Variants in Wastewater: An Old Technique Is Yielding Powerful New Insights in the Covid-19 Pandemic The newest addition to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Covid Data Tracker reports on levels of SARS-CoV-2 RNA in wastewater. While researchers, public health departments, and some private companies have been monitoring wastewater since the beginning of the pandemic, this tracker marks an important step in the establishment of the National Wastewater Surveillance System […] Dave Luo, Rick A. Bright, Jacqueline Houtman, Jessica Malaty Rivera, Jonathan Gilmour, Lindsey Shultz, Megan Diamond
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