Meet the 'Czar-Like Figure' Guiding US Coronavirus Response

Deborah Birx will lead response under VP Mike Pence
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 27, 2020 11:42 AM CST
Meet the US Coronavirus Coordinator
Deborah Birx speaks after being sworn-in as the new ambassador-at-large and coordinator of the US government activities to combat HIV/AIDS, during her ceremony, Friday, April 25, 2014, in the Benjamin Franklin Room of the State Department in Washington.   (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

The US now has a coronavirus coordinator. Or, more specifically, a White House Coronavirus Response Coordinator, the title given by Vice President Mike Pence to Deborah Birx, who will join his response team, his office announced Thursday. Bloomberg describes Birx as a career government official, nominated by then-president Obama in 2014 to be the State Department's top AIDS official. Politico says Birx, who will also join the coronavirus task force led by Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar, will effectively be a "czar-like figure" guiding the administration's response to the COVID-19 outbreak. (More COVID-19 stories.)

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