HomeWashington Letter2018 ▶ New CDC Director Named
New CDC Director Named

Last week, the Department of Health and Human Services announced the new director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Robert Redfield, MD. Dr. Redfield, an infectious disease specialist and researcher with a focus on HIV and AIDS, was most recently a professor at the University of Maryland School of Medicine in the Institute of Human Virology. He served on the Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS under George W. Bush. Dr. Redfield is the founding director of the U.S. Army Institute of Research’s Department of Retroviral Research, where he served for 20 years. He is credited with early scientific discoveries about HIV as the cause of AIDS as well as heterosexual transmission of HIV. Dr. Redfield is a past member of the NIH’s AIDS Research Advisory Council and the Fogarty International Center’s Advisory Board.

Although Dr. Redfield does not require congressional confirmation, his appointment has been met with criticism by some AIDS and public health groups for his support of controversial policies related to HIV/AIDS during the 1980’s, including reporting of positive HIV results to public health authorities without patient consent. The Ranking Democrat on the Senate Health Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, Patty Murray (D-WA), wrote to President Trump expressing concern over these issues and what she views as Dr. Redfield’s lack of public health service.

Last Reviewed: March 30, 2018