Rick Bright, Atul Gawande on Biden’s Covid task forceNovember 9, 2020
The Biden-Harris transition team will announce a Covid-19 “transition advisory board” on Monday that includes a dozen high-profile doctors, two people with knowledge of the announcement told POLITICO.
POLITICO last week first reported that President-elect Joe Biden planned to announce a Covid-19 task force after the election, in line with his vow to begin preparing to tackle the surging pandemic before Inauguration Day. Previously unreported members of the panel include Rick Bright, who was ousted as chief of the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority earlier this year and became an outspoken critic of the Trump administration before leaving government last month.
The Biden team also will tap high-profile surgeon and New Yorker writer Atul Gawande, who worked at HHS during the Clinton administration and recently led a health care joint venture between Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway and JP Morgan known as Haven.
Other members of the advisory group include Luciana Borio, who served as the FDA’s acting chief scientist and on the National Security Council during the Trump administration, and University of Minnesota infectious disease specialist Michael Osterholm.
The task force also includes UCSF’s Eric Goosby, who helped shape HIV/AIDS policy during the Clinton and Obama administration; UCSF emergency physician Robert Rodriguez; and Loyce Pace of the Global Health Council.
The advisory board’s co-chairs are former Surgeon General Vivek Murthy, former FDA Commissioner David Kessler and Yale’s Marcella Nunez-Smith. The group also includes NYU’s Celine Gounder, Obama White House aide Zeke Emanuel and RWJF’s Julie Morita, POLITICO previously reported.
The Biden-Harris transition team did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Meanwhile, the Trump administration is set to convene a meeting of its own coronavirus task force on Monday, led by Vice President Mike Pence, after that task force’s efforts were largely shunted aside this fall during President Donald Trump’s focus on his re-election bid.
There have been about 10 million confirmed cases of Covid-19 in the United States, and the pandemic shows no signs of slowing, public health experts have warned.