DR Anton Fauci81, announced he will leave his post before the end of President Biden’s term, having served seven administrations, and said he will not wait until the end of Covid because he would be 105 by then.
“We are now in a pattern. If someone says, ‘You will leave when we are out of Covid’ then I will be 105. I think we’re going to live with that,” Biden’s chief medical adviser told Politico when asked if he feels committed to staying in his position.
Fauci became director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) in 1984, a position he still holds. From there he guided the nation through viral diseases such as HIV/AIDS, swine flu, SARS, MERS, Ebola and ultimately Covid-19.
Fauci was initially the public face of the Trump administration’s response to the pandemic, but the relationship between the NIAID head and Trump soured as Trump grew impatient with Fauci’s cautious handling of lockdowns.
The infectious disease expert said he was related to former President Trump, who was born and raised in New York.
“We’ve developed an interesting relationship,” Brooklyn-born Fauci said of Trump, who is from Queens. “Two guys from New York, different in their opinions and ideology, but still two guys who grew up in the same neighborhood of this city. I think we’re related in that way.’
Fauci admitted he knew Republicans would “come” after him, especially if he stayed in the job, but said it wasn’t a factor he was considering when he left.
“They’re going to try to come after me anyway. I mean probably less when I’m not on the job,” he said. “I don’t take that into account when making my career decision.”
dr Anthony Fauci announced he will leave his post before the end of President Biden’s term after serving seven administrations and said he will not wait until the end of Covid as he would be 105 by then
The infectious disease expert said he was related to former President Trump, who was born and raised in New York
Republicans have already conducted their midterm campaigns with promises to investigate Fauci. Republicans in Congress have had multiple arguments with Fauci over NIH grants earmarked for a lab in the city where COVID-19 originated.
He pondered what they might be trying to investigate.
“I don’t think they can say anything about the science,” he said of congressional Republicans calling for probes. “If you want to investigate, be my guest. If I tell someone that it’s important to follow basic good public health practices… what will you investigate about that?
In 2014, the NIH awarded the EcoHealth Alliance a $3.3 million grant to study bat coronaviruses. EcoHealth donated $600.00 to the Wuhan Institute of Virology.
Wuhan lab at center of lab leak theory for origins of Covid-19 to conduct gain-of-function research.
The Wall Street Journal reported in May that three researchers at WIV developed symptoms of Covid-19 and sought hospital treatment in November 2019, supporting the theory that the virus originated in the lab.
Funding for gain-of-function research, the controversial practice of increasing a virus’ transmissibility or lethality to study the development of new diseases, was banned under President Obama in 2014. This decision was reversed by the NIH three years later.
Fauci denied that his agency’s money ever went into gain-of-function research.
“The NIH and NIAID have categorically not funded any gain-of-function research to be conducted at the Wuhan Institute of Virology,” Fauci said in May 2021.
In June, he defended the “modest” collaboration with the Chinese lab, arguing it would be “almost a dereliction of duty if we didn’t study this, and the only way you can study these things is you have to go where the.” action is’ referring to the SARS outbreak in the early 2000s, which is believed to have originated from bats in China.
After recording more than 5,000 deaths per day in February 2021, the disease’s damage has slowed, although over 300 people are still dying from Covid-19 every day in the United States
“What we have right now, I think we’re almost in a stable state,” Fauci said.
But fears of a deadlier variant still linger. Last week, federal officials said all adults should now get a second booster shot, despite drug companies estimating that new shots for the latest variants will be available in the fall.
At one point, Fauci and other health officials gave reassurances that a vaccination and a booster would be enough. Now Americans are wondering when the vaccination cycle will ever end.
“That’s a reasonable question,” Fauci said. “But the reason not to wait is that we’re not exactly in a lull.”
Daily cases rose 15 percent over the past two weeks to more than 130,000 on Monday, although that’s likely an undercount as positive tests at home don’t count in the total. Hospital admissions are up 20 percent from two weeks ago and deaths are up 9 percent.
“I think, although I don’t know for sure, [that] In the next cycle or so, we’re going to get closer to an annual flare-up, like the flu,” Fauci told Politico.