The US Senate has elected a new director of the US National Institutes of Health by a majority vote. The post will be taken by oncologist surgeon Monica Bertagnoli. The former director resigned in December 2021.
A majority of the US Senate voted in favor of the appointment. Monica Bertagnoli head of the US National Institutes of Health (NIH). The post of head of the organization has been vacant for two years, writes the Washington Post.
Bertagnoli is the second woman to serve as NIH director in the institution’s history. Previously, she headed the US National Cancer Institute from October 2022, becoming the first woman to hold this post.
The last head of the NIH was Francis Collins. He held this position for 12 years and resigned in December 2021 amid the publication of documents showing his department allocated funds for virus research at the Wuhan laboratory.
The president Joseph Biden approved Bertagnoli’s candidacy back in May, but the Senate Health Committee obstructed the appointment process. Thus, the upper house of the US Congress tried to put pressure on the White House, forcing it to present a plan to reduce drug prices.