Monica Bertagnolli Confirmed as NIH Director
On November 7, Dr. Monica Bertagnolli was confirmed by the Senate as the new National Institutes of Health (NIH) Director in a bipartisan 62-36 vote after having been nominated by the Biden Administration in May and experiencing several deterrents from Senators, including Chair of the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee (HELP), Senator Bernie Sanders (D-VT), who requested Bertagnolli address pharmaceutical drug prices (see previous COSSA coverage). Despite her challenging confirmation process, Bertagnolli will be the 17th Director of the NIH following a two-year gap in leadership with Dr. Lawrence Tabak as Acting Director (see previous COSSA coverage).
Following her confirmation, Bertagnolli stated, “As a physician-scientist for more than 30 years, I have seen the transformative power of NIH research to produce results that save lives, including my own treatment for breast cancer. As NIH director, I look forward to ensuring that NIH continues to be the steward of our nation’s medical research while engaging all people and communities in the research effort that includes informing medical practice that drives equitable access to health care for all.”