iNDICA NEWS BUREAU-
Another Indian-American appointed to US President-elect Biden’s team to fight against the pandemic.
On Friday, January 15, Biden named Vidur Sharma as a testing advisor in his COVID-19 Response Team, as the US President-elect laid out his ambitious goal to intensify vaccinations across the country to tackle the spread of the deadly pandemic.
“We are in a race against time, and we need a comprehensive strategy to quickly contain this virus. The individuals announced today will bolster the White House’s COVID-19 Response team and play important roles in carrying out our rescue plan and vaccination program. At a time when American families are facing numerous challenges, I know these public servants will do all that is needed to build our nation back better,” Joe Biden said while appointing additional members of his COVID-19 Response team.
Sharma was a part of the Obama administration where he served as a health policy advisor on the Domestic Policy Council. He supported the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, aligned Federal Department and Agencies, and collaborated with community stakeholders to further the administration’s health policy agenda.
He also served as Deputy Research Director with Protect Our Care, a coalition of advocacy organizations dedicated to preventing the repeal of the ACA. Since then, Sharma has advised health sector organizations on value-based care arrangements at PwC Strategy.
Sharma, a son of Indian immigrants, was born in Wisconsin and raised in Minnesota. He attended the prestigious Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health and Saint Louis University. Sharma currently lives with his wife in Washington DC.
Among other appointments announced Friday were Amy Chang, Policy Advisor; Abbe Gluck, Special Counsel; David Kessler, Chief Science Officer of COVID Response; Rosa Po, COVID Response Team Deputy Chief of Staff; Andy Slavitt, Senior Advisor to the COVID Response Coordinator; Ben Wakana, Deputy Director of Strategic Communications & Engagement; and B. Cameron Webb, Senior Policy Advisor for COVID-19 Equity.
The Transition said that the appointees will play integral roles in implementing and executing Biden’s strategy to effectively and equitably vaccinate as many people as possible, while also increasing testing and taking other important steps that will be key to changing the course of the pandemic.
Biden on Friday announced an ambitious goal of inoculating 100 million Americans with COVID-19 vaccines in the first 100 days of his administration.
During his election campaign, Biden, who will take over as the 46th President of the US, made tackling COVID-19 and the economic hardships it had put on Americans a core pitch to voters.
Vice President-elect Kamala Harris said, “containing the coronavirus pandemic is one of the defining challenges of our time. This outstanding team will help us defeat this challenge by helping get this virus under control, responsibly reopen our economy, and safely reopen our schools. I look forward to working closely with these dedicated public servants not only to address this urgent crisis, but also to build better preparedness for future pandemics and other public health threats.”