Anthony Fauci, M.D., director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), will deliver the 2021 William C. Menninger Memorial Convocation Lecture at this year’s online Annual Meeting.
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At NIAID, Fauci oversees an extensive research portfolio focused on infectious and immune-mediated diseases.
Fauci has been the most public face of the White House Coronavirus Task Force, advocating for social distancing, use of personal protective equipment, and other measures to slow the spread of COVID-19. He has spoken at multiple meetings of medical specialty organizations. At the meeting of the Academy of Consultation-Liaison Psychiatry (ACLP) last fall, Fauci referenced the spike in mental illness, including substance use and suicidal ideation, “associated with extreme restrictions during lockdowns.” He added, “Medical workers themselves are experiencing a mental health crisis because of the strain of taking care of so many desperately ill individuals.”
In a January 28 interview with editors of the New England Journal of Medicine, Fauci discussed innovations in COVID-19 testing, distribution of vaccines, and the hesitancy of some groups of people to receive the vaccine, among other issues.
Much reluctance centers around the haste with which the vaccines were developed. He emphasized that enormous progress in the science of vaccines and the understanding of biologically similar pathogens had preceded the emergence of the coronavirus by decades and helped lay the groundwork for Project Warp Speed. “The speed [of vaccine development] is not related to cutting corners but is a reflection of the extraordinary advances in vaccine platform technology that allowed us to do things in months as opposed to years,” Fauci said.
The Convocation of Distinguished Fellows will be held Sunday, May 2, from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. ■
Fauci to Deliver Convocation Lecture | Psychiatric News