Biden expected to pick former FDA commissioner and cardiologist Robert Califf to run the agency

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  • NBC News reported Friday that President Joe Biden may choose Robert Calif. to serve as the head of the Food and Drug Administration, citing people familiar with the selection process.
  • The FDA, currently under the supervision of Acting Commissioner Dr. Janet Woodcock, has been without a permanent chief since Biden took office in January.
  • Calif, a cardiologist, was briefly the agency’s commissioner under the Obama administration beginning in 2016.

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NBC News reported Friday that President Joe Biden may choose Robert Calif. to serve as the head of the Food and Drug Administration, citing people familiar with the selection process.

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The FDA, currently under the supervision of Acting Commissioner Dr. Janet Woodcock, has been without a permanent chief since Biden took office in January. The White House reportedly dismissed Woodcock after facing opposition from some members of Congress her handling of opioids While in the agency.

Calif, a cardiologist working at Duke University School of Medicine, was the agency’s commissioner under the Obama administration that began in 2016. He also served as deputy commissioner of the agency’s Office of Medical Products and Tobacco.

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New selection is expected imminently as Woodcock cannot legally live without a nominee to hold office permanently as acting chief of staff before November 15.

Biden’s expected enrollment comes amid the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, which has killed at least 759,678 Americans, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.

The FDA has helped bring life-saving treatments to market and have authorized the use of COVID vaccines, which have been shown to be particularly effective against serious illness, hospitalization, and death.

According to data compiled by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 194 million Americans have been fully vaccinated against COVID.

However, the agency has recently come under severe criticism over its decision to approve Biogen’s Alzheimer’s drug, EduHelm.

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