The advent of the COVID-19 pandemic has brought investment and the use of molecular spectroscopy to study disease mechanisms and treatment in to sharper focus. This symposium, organized by the Society for Applied Spectroscopy, will provide a critical look at the most advanced applications of spectroscopic methods to address biomedical research and drug development. In this contribution we report on various innovative technological methods for bringing spectroscopy closer to the end-user including clinical use and vaccine release quality control. We will focus on molecular-sensitive spectroscopic methods. Applications will include intraoperative in-vivo examination, high throughput sorting and examination of cells, clinical environment in-vivo studies, spectroscopic chemical imaging of cancer pathology and treatment, theranostic nanomedicine and vaccine release quality control. The symposium will focus on translational research and medicine providing more meaningful, applicable results that directly benefit human health. With COVID the expectation is that there will be a faster translation of spectroscopy into practice, to allow faster bench-to-patient, point of care solutions.