'Vaccines: What's New, What's Next' Town Hall with Dr. Jen Ashton and Dr. Anthony Fauci

Dr. Fauci and other medical experts answered your COVID-19 vaccine questions

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Friday, September 24, 2021
Dr. Fauci joins our town hall on the COVID vaccine
Bill Ritter reports on Dr. Fauci's appearance during the COVID-19 town hall

Dr. Anthony Fauci joined Dr. Jen Ashton for a one-on-one interview on Thursday as part of "Vaccines: What's New, What's Next," a virtual town hall to answer your questions on COVID-19 variants, vaccines, boosters shots, mandates and more.

The town hall, hosted by the ABC Owned Television Stations, is designed to help viewers separate fact from fiction, and offer guidance on issues like talking to vaccine-hesitant family and friends.


'Vaccines: What's New, What's Next' Town Hall with Dr. Jen Ashton and Dr. Anthony Fauci

Ashton, who is ABC's chief medical correspondent, moderated the discussion.

Dr. Anthony Fauci shared his thoughts on vaccinating children, testing for Covid antibodies, and mixing brands of vaccines.

The entire panel is listed below:

Moderator: Dr. Jen. Ashton

Dr. Jennifer Ashton is a board-certified Ob-Gyn and is also board-certified in obesity medicine. She is a graduate of Columbia College, Columbia University. She received her medical degree from Columbia University, College of Physicians and Surgeons, where she was elected class president for four consecutive years. Upon graduation, she was awarded the prestigious Bartlestone Award in Pharmacology. Dr. Ashton received her post-graduate training in Ob-Gyn at St.Luke's-Roosevelt Hospital Center in NYC, an affiliate of Columbia University's College of Physicians and Surgeons. She served as Administrative Chief Resident and was awarded Chief Resident of the Year upon completing her residency. She received a Master's of Science Degree in Nutrition from the Columbia University College of Physicians & Surgeons Institute of Human Nutrition in 2016, making Dr. Ashton the only M.D.s with a national news media platform who also has a degree in nutrition.

Dr. Ashton is a Fellow of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. She has presented abstracts and posters at national clinical meetings in the fields of General Surgery, Critical Care and Gynecologic Oncology. One of the few physicians with media platforms who still sees patients, she has an active medical practice, where she treats women of all ages for medical and surgical gynecologic conditions. In addition, using her credentials in obesity medicine and nutrition, Dr. Ashton treats obesity/overweight and manages weight-loss medications.

Dr. Ashton is the Chief Medical Correspondent for ABC News, (only the third person to hold this position in the history of ABC News), and the first Ob-Gyn to ever hold this position in national network news media. From 2009-2011, Dr. Ashton was the Medical Correspondent for CBS News Network, where she received the prestigious Columbia Alfred DuPont Award for Excellence in Journalism for her work. Dr. Ashton appears frequently across all of ABC News' platforms including "Good Morning America," "World News Tonight," "Nightline" and every day on "GMA3: What You Need to Know."

Dr. Ashton is the author of six books, with her most recent entitled, "The New Normal: A Roadmap to Resilience in the Pandemic Era", which came out in February 2021. In January 2010, Dr. Ashton traveled to Haiti with a medical team where she treated victims of the earthquake for eight days. More recently, she has covered the hurricanes in Houston and Puerto Rico, and the mass shooting in Las Vegas. She has traveled to the NIH and the CDC headquarters to meet with and interview Dr. Anthony Fauci and the heads of various divisions of the CDC. Dr. Ashton is a three-time Emmy award winner, winning for ABC's breaking news coverage of the Orlando nightclub shooting anchored by George Stephanopoulos, and for ABC's "Good Morning America" for Best Morning News Broadcast.

Dr. Anthony Fauci, American physician & NIAID Director

Dr. Anthony Fauci testifies during a hearing on efforts to combat COVID-19, Tuesday, May 11, 2021, on Capitol Hill in Washington.
Jim Lo Scalzo/Pool via AP

Dr. Fauci was appointed Director of NIAID in 1984. He oversees an extensive research portfolio of basic and applied research to prevent, diagnose, and treat established infectious diseases such as HIV/AIDS, respiratory infections, diarrheal diseases, tuberculosis and malaria as well as emerging diseases such as Ebola and Zika. NIAID also supports research on transplantation and immune-related illnesses, including autoimmune disorders, asthma and allergies. The NIAID budget for fiscal year 2021 is an estimated $6.1 billion.

Dr. Fauci has advised seven presidents on HIV/AIDS and many other domestic and global health issues. He was one of the principal architects of the President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), a program that has saved millions of lives throughout the developing world.

Heidi Arthur, chief campaign development officer with the Ad Council

Heidi Arthur brings together leading creative agencies, corporate partners, media and technology platforms and nonprofit and government clients to drive public education, awareness and action. She has more than 25 years of experience creating change around pressing social issues like diversity and inclusion, minority education, hunger prevention, breast cancer awareness and bullying prevention. Her campaigns have gone on to win numerous accolades, including Cannes Lions, Effies, Clios and an Emmy.

To ensure continued creative innovation and excellence, Heidi also manages the Ad Council's Creative Review Committees, comprising nearly 30 of the industry's top agency leaders. The Committees meet regularly to review, refine and raise the bar on the Ad Council's social-good campaigns.

Heidi joined the Ad Council in 2000 after spending 10 years in the ad industry at Grey and Wells, Rich, Greene. She is a graduate of Union College and has a Certificate in Corporate Social Responsibility from Harvard Business School. Heidi has served on boards focused on cancer research and is currently involved in Leukemia Lymphoma Society's Team in Training.

Rita Carreón, vice president for health at UnidosUS

Rita Carreón is Vice President for Health at UnidosUS, a national Hispanic civil rights and advocacy organization based in Washington, DC. Ms. Carreón oversees the organization's strategic direction in health, including community engagement and programming, addressing social determinants of health, and advancing health equity. She currently leads a team on the public health response for COVID-19 through UnidosUS Esperanza/Hope Fund. She works in close partnership with UnidosUS Affiliates, public and private partners and other stakeholders to advance access to quality and equitable health care. Previously, she was Vice President of Clinical Strategies and Health Care Equity at America's Health Insurance Plans (AHIP) and led health programming at the National Association of Community Health Centers, Inc.

Ms. Carreón's expertise and interests include improving health and quality of care for diverse communities. She advises organizations on envisioning where health happens, including advancing a culture of health with the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, in addition to the American Cancer Society and American Heart Associations' Health Equity Councils and Pfizer's Multicultural Advisory Council. Ms. Carreon is also co-chair of the steering committee for the National Institutes of Health's Community Engagement Alliance Against COVID 19 Disparities (CEAL Alliance). She is a Carol Emmott Foundation Fellow and a member of the Women of Impact for Health Care - a group of female health care executives with a shared goal to realign the health care system to meet the needs of all Americans, recognizing that people who need care come from all walks of life. Ms. Carreón is a certified health insurance executive, holds a post-graduate certificate, health care administration and Bachelor of Science degrees in Community and School Health from California State University, Long Beach.

Dr. Mara Minguez, pediatrician and assistant chief medical officer for community affairs at New York Presbyterian/Columbia, and assistant clinical professor of pediatrics and public health at Columbia University

Mara Minguez, MD, MSc, currently serves as the Assistant Chief Medical Officer for Community Affairs at the New York Presbyterian/Columbia University Irving Medical Center. In this role, she is responsible for developing and strengthening existing relationships with NYPH communities including elected officials, community-based organizations, community health partners and community physicians.

She has been a faculty member since 2007 and has an existing appointment as an Assistant Clinical Professor of Pediatrics and Public Health at Columbia University Irving Medical Center and the Mailman School of Public Health, and is board-certified in Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine. She is a clinical preceptor at a school-based health center located in a busy Bronx high school, where she is responsible for the clinical care of adolescents as well as the teaching of medical students, pediatric residents and adolescent medicine fellows.

Dr. Minguez has been involved in research evaluations that have demonstrated the impact of school-based health centers on reproductive health and preventive care services in adolescents in New York City and has conducted a comprehensive assessment of school-based health centers in the Dominican Republic.

Additionally, Dr. Minguez is the Medical Director of the Lang Youth Medical Program at New York Presbyterian Hospital, a six-year medical enrichment program for underserved junior/high school students in the Washington Heights/Inwood community in New York City. In this role, she advises regarding curriculum, coordinates partnerships with professional organizations and oversees program evaluation.

The wellbeing of medically underserved adolescents and an increase of minority representation in the medical field are a few examples of Dr. Minguez's focus, inspiration and passion.

Dr. Angélica Cifuentes Kottkamp, assistant professor in the Department of Medicine at NYU

Dr. Angélica Cifuentes Kottkamp is a South American doctor who graduated in 2011 from San Martín University, in Bogotá D.C., Colombia. She came to the United States in 2012 to work as a research assistant at the Glomerular Center of Columbia University where she oversaw multiple clinical trials on glomerular diseases and kidney transplant. She completed her residency in Internal Medicine in BronxCare Health System, an affiliated hospital of Icahn School of Medicine, and in 2016 she joined NYU Grossman School of Medicine where she completed her Fellowship in Infectious Diseases and Immunology.

She joined our Division as Faculty in 2018 and became a key member of the Infectious Diseases team in Bellevue Hospital where she keeps a continuity clinic at the Virology Clinic taking care of patients living with HIV, mostly Hispanics/Latinx. Dr. Kottkamp has led basic science research projects on viruses such as Zika and Chikungunya and has been a major educator in the training of future infectious disease specialists both at NYU and internationally in countries like Zambia & Ghana, achieving important recognition as winning the Teacher of The Year award in 2021.

In 2019 she joined the NYU Langone Vaccine Center and has since been working as sub-Investigator on multiple studies of COVID-19 including vaccine clinical trials, monoclonal antibodies, and immune responses to SARS-CoV-2. During the pandemic, she has been invited to multiple public events on vaccine education for the Latinx community next to important figures such Dr. Fauci and Dr. David Chokshi (NYC Health Commissioner). Dr. Kottkamp is a member of the Inclusion, Diversity, Equity & Access Task Force of the Infectious Diseases Society of America, currently leads the Vaccine Center Satellite Site at Bellevue Hospital and is the Associate Program Director of the Infectious Disease and Immunology Fellowship Training Program at NYU Grossman School of Medicine.