REGULATORY REVIEW: A Look at the Biden Administration’s Health Actions in Year One

REGULATORY REVIEW

A Look at the Biden Administration’s Health Actions in Year One

The pandemic and partisan gridlock shaped the new president’s appointments and priorities

On January 20, 2021, Joseph R. Biden was sworn in as the 46th president of the United States. He assumed responsibility during a pandemic that had already killed more than 400,000 Americans. At the time, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) had given emergency use authorizations (EUA) only recently to just two vaccines, Moderna and Pfizer. His administration took office amid a cloud of partisan contention brought to the fore by riots at the US Capitol two weeks before the inauguration. These two factors, the ongoing pandemic and an overriding sense of partisan gridlock, shaped many of the first-year actions of the administration. A look at Biden’s political appointees and the health policies advanced under his watch up until press time for this magazine—November 2021—provides a sense of the new administration’s priorities and goals for the next three years.

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