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Two Indian-American doctors in US President-elect Biden’s Covid task force

Two Indian-American doctors in US President-elect Biden’s Covid task force
November 10
11:54 2020

WASHINGTON: Two Indian-American surgeons Dr Vivek Murthy and Dr Atul Gawande, have been included in Covid-19 Advisory Board, which will help shape President-elect Joe Biden’s response to the coronavirus pandemic that has claimed the lives of over 2, 37,000 in the US.

The US is the worst-hit nation from the pandemic with nearly 10 million Covid-19 cases.
The transition coronavirus advisory board led by the former Surgeon General Vivek Murthy along with co-chairs Dr. David Kessler and Dr. Marcella Nunez-Smith, comprises a team of leading public health experts who will advise President-elect Biden, Vice President-elect Harris, and the transition’s Covid-19 staff.

Dr Murthy, who traces his family roots to Karnataka, served as the 19th Surgeon General of the United States from 2014-2017.

As the Vice-Admiral of the US Public Health Service Commissioned Corps, he commanded a uniformed service of 6,600 public health officers globally, who focused on helping underserved populations, protecting the nation from Ebola and Zika, responding to the Flint water crisis, and natural disasters such as hurricanes.

Surgeon and award-winning author Dr Gawande whose family hails from Maharashtra previously served as a senior advisor in the Department of Health and Human Services in the Clinton Administration.

He is the Cyndy and John Fish Distinguished Professor of Surgery at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Samuel O. Thier Professor of Surgery at Harvard Medical School, and Professor of Health Policy and Management at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.

Dr Gawande is also the founder and chair of Ariadne Labs, a joint center between Brigham and Women’s Hospital and the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health for health systems innovation, and of Lifebox, a nonprofit organization making surgery safer globally.

The Transition COVID-19 Advisory Board is made up of a diverse and experienced group of doctors and scientists, whose members have served in previous administrations and have experience engaging with and leading our country’s response to nationwide and worldwide public health crises.

“I’ve named the Covid-19 Transition Advisory Board comprised of distinguished public health experts to help our transition team translate the Biden-Harris Covid-19 plan into action.,” Biden said in a press conference from Delaware.

“A blueprint that we can put in place as soon as Kamala and I are sworn into office on January 20th, 2021. And we will seek to add other members to this board to bring additional important perspective on public health and expertise throughout the transition,” he added.

Dr Beth Cameron and Dr Rebecca Katz are serving as advisors to the Transition on COVID-19 and will work closely with the Advisory Board.

Apart from Dr Gawande, other members of the Board are Dr Luciana Borio, Dr Rick Bright, Dr Ezekiel Emanuel, Dr Celine Gounder, Dr Julie Morita, Dr Michael Osterholm, Ms Loyce Pace, Dr Robert Rodriguez, and Dr Eric Goosby.

A statement issued by the transition team said, “President-elect Biden has pledged to bring leadership to the COVID pandemic, which continues to claim thousands of lives each week, by curbing the spread of the disease, providing free treatment to those in need, and elevating the voices of scientists and public health experts”.

The leading scientists and public health experts of the Board will consult with state and local officials to determine the public health and economic steps necessary to get the virus under control, to deliver immediate relief to working families, to address ongoing racial and ethnic disparities, and to reopen our schools and businesses safely and effectively.

According to John Hopkins University, the US reported new Covid-19 cases are rising in at least 40 states, with more than 9.3 million total infections and more than 236,000 deaths. (ANI)

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