WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Dr. Deborah Birx, former coordinator of the Trump White House Coronavirus Task Force, will take a job in the private sector and join a Texas manufacturer who says its purifiers clean up COVID. -19 from the air in minutes and from the surfaces in hours.
Birx will join Dallas-based ActivePure as chief scientific and medical adviser, she and the company said Friday.
Birx, a global health expert, came to the White House in 2020 to help lead the Trump administration’s response to the pandemic.
But she was criticized for not standing up to former President Donald Trump when he downplayed the virus, predicted it would disappear and questioned whether ingesting bleach could help cure infected Americans.
While his friend and former mentor, Dr. Anthony Fauci, was promoted to one of Democratic President Joe Biden’s top medical advisers, Birx did not land a job in the new administration.
“The Biden administration wanted a clean slate,” he told Reuters in an interview. “I completely understand it.”
Birx left the government earlier this week.
She and Fauci, she said, regularly wondered what could have been done differently over the past year.
“When you have the 100,000 people we lost during the summer and the 300,000 people we lost during the fall-winter surge, you have to ask yourself and know that it didn’t turn out as well as it should,” he said. saying.
“We are all responsible for that.”
The coronavirus has killed more than 530,000 people in the United States, more than in any other country.
Birx said she was still processing regrets and steps she could have taken to be more effective.
“I’m trying to sort them by rank,” he said. “We have to be willing to step back and really look at where we could have been and why we weren’t more effective.”
Birx said it remained concerned about the level of testing in the country, but praised the new administration for modeling the wearing of masks and other behaviors that help fight the virus.
Trump, a Republican, avoided masks.
“I think the message has been very good, very consistent,” he said of Biden’s team. “That is really important when you ask people to change their behaviors.”
In addition to her position at ActivePure, Birx also joined the George W. Bush Institute as a global health fellow and the biopharmaceutical company Innoviva as a board member, she said.
Reporting by Jeff Mason; Edited by Heather Timmons, Kieran Murray and Himani Sarkar