After 40 years, Fauci is stepping down as NIAID director.
Although the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases has not yet officially confirmed it, Dr. Anthony Fauci was expected to step down from his position as head of the institute by December 31.
Earlier this year, both Fauci and NIAID said that he would be stepping down from his federal positions by the end of December. As of Sunday, NIAIDs website still listed Fauci as the director of the agency.
At the end of this month, NIAID said in a statement in December, Dr. Anthony Fauci, Director of NIAID, will step down from the role hes held since 1984. It included a quote from Fauci that read, While I am moving on from my current positions, I am not retiring. After more than 50 years of government service, I plan to pursue the next phase of my career while I still have so much energy and passion for my field.
NIAID has not confirmed whether Fauci retired from his position on Saturday, Dec. 31. The Epoch Times on Sunday contacted the federal health agency for comment about Faucis current status.
Several days ago, Fauci recalled how his agency handled the U.S. COVID-19 response in an interview with The Guardian and asserted that the only thing I can say is that we tried our best given our best judgment and our analysis of what was going on around us to make recommendations.
I dont think anybody got it completely 100-percent right but the idea to say that you should have not put any restrictions on anything at a time when there was a tsunami of infections and New York City hospitals were getting overrun, practicallythink of Elmhurst hospital, remember those pictures of the cooler trucks with bodies piling up in thatyou had to do something pretty significant to slow that down, he said.
Fauci took over NIAID in 1984 under the Reagan administration. Before that, he had worked in various positions in the federal government since the 1960s.
But it wasnt until 2020 that Fauci, 82, became a household name in the United States. Starting in early 2020, Fauci has given more than a thousand interviews to various news outlets about COVID-19 and the trajectory of the pandemic, often drawing criticism for his generally dire predictions and changing stances on lockdowns, vaccines, and mask-wearing.
In Congress, Fauci has drawn extensive criticism from Republicans for his agency having provided funds to a third-party research organization to study bat coronaviruses at a laboratory in Wuhan, China. COVID-19, a coronavirus, emerged in the Wuhan area, and in 2021, some U.S. intelligence officials released an inconclusive report saying they believe it emerged from the laboratory.
Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Director Tom Frieden (L), National Institutes of Health (NIH) Director Anthony Fauci (C), and Ariel Pablos-Mendez, assistant-administrator of the U.S. Agency for International Development’s Bureau for Global Health, at an Africa, Global Health, Global Human Rights and International Organizations Subcommittee and Western Hemisphere Subcommittee hearing on
“The Global Zika Epidemic: Emerging in the Americas” on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., on Feb. 10, 2016. (Nicholas Kamm/AFP/Getty Images)
Former Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Tom Frieden (L), Anthony Fauci (C), and Ariel Pablos-Mendez, assistant administrator of the U.S. Agency for International Developments Bureau for Global Health on a Feb. 10, 2016. (Nicholas Kamm/AFP/Getty Images)
When Republicans secured the majority in the House in Novembers elections, several incoming committee chairs have promised to hold public hearings on Faucis former agency and said they would subpoena the doctor. In his final White House news conference, Fauci told reporters that he would comply with the investigation.
In last weeks interview, Fauci said that widespread lockdown measures that were enacted across U.S. municipalities was the right thing to doand claimed that he did not always favor closing down schools for in-person learning.
If you look at the record and go back to the clips, youll see how many times I said, weve got to try our best to get the kids back to school as quickly as we possibly can and as safely as we possibly can, he said. On the one hand, I was in favor of shutting things down temporarily, but I certainly felt we needed to open up as quickly and as safely as we could.
In an interview last month with The Washington Post, Fauci asserted that Im the first to admit Im far from perfect. But when you say do over, you know, I really cant see something that I would do completely over.
One of his chief critics, Dr. Marty Makary of Johns Hopkins University, however, said that the longtime federal health official has a track record of total failure at NIAID.
People forget that he was the head of our National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, and the report card on that agency is pretty bad after this pandemic.
Now, people are angry with Dr. Fauci for his changing recommendations, Makary told Fox News late last week ahead of Faucis retirement. Really, its just a symptom of a much larger and deeper problem. And that is the failure of this agency to do prompt research quickly to answer the big controversies in real-time.