Home » National Health Research Forum » 2021 National Health Research Forum » 2021 National Health Research Forum - Day Two

The second day of the Forum celebrated the tremendous efforts taken in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and turned to what efforts are needed to ensure robust research infrastructure to better respond to future health crises.

Fireside Chat: Conquering Public Health Challenges – Today and Tomorrow

Dr. Rochelle Walensky, Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is joining  Lisa Desjardins, Correspondent, PBS NewsHour to discuss COVCID-19 updates and how science is helping to beat back the pandemic.

Fireside Chat: A New Pandemic Paradigm

Research!America’s Board Chair, Susan Dentzer, a senior policy fellow with the Robert J. Margolis Center for Health Policy at Duke University, is joined by Albert Bourla, the Chairman and CEO of Pfizer to discuss the new pandemic paradigm. Topics of discussion include: Booster vaccines, vaccine data on children, and the contributions Pfizer has made to global health during the pandemic.

Fireside Chat: Will History Repeat Itself?

Dr. Scott Gottlieb, Former FDA Commissioner, a Fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, and Author of “Uncontrolled Spread,” and Meg Tirrell, Senior Health & Science Reporter for CNBC reflect on the pandemic response and explore how we can prevent history from repeating itself.

Chronic Disease: The Progress Imperative

Chronic diseases and conditions have figured prominently into the COVID-19 pandemic, increasing the risk associated with and the toll the coronavirus has taken on Americans and populations across the globe. Beyond COVID-19, the human and fiscal costs of this constellation of health threats is staggering: according to the Milken Foundation, the annual economic impact on the U.S. of the seven most common chronic diseases is estimated to be $1.3 trillion, which could grow to approximately $6 trillion by 2050.

This discussion will focus on public and private sector-fueled progress against lupus and Alzheimer’s, two diseases emblematic of the challenges posed by chronic conditions, shedding light on how far we’ve come and how far we have yet to go to defeat them. What are the most promising developments against lupus and Alzheimer’s disease? What is the significance of the regulatory landscape? What role do patients play in determining the direction of progress against these threats?

Fireside Chat: Prevent, Intercept, Eradicate: Reimagining Medical Progress

Research!America’s Vice President of Policy and Advocacy, Ellie Dehoney, and Research!America board member Dr. Bill Hait, Global Head of Johnson & Johnson Global External Innovation, discuss an audacious vision for the future of health and health care and a bold approach to making it happen.

Researcher to Researcher: A Fireside Chat with Dr. Anthony Fauci

Dr. Anthony Fauci and Dr. Alexandra Colón-Rodríguez, a Postdoctoral Scientist discuss the value and art of science communication.

Flash Talks Competition

Featuring young scientists from academia and industry, judged by a panel of science communicators.



A Relatable Path to Uncommon Leadership: A Conversation with the Honorable Donna Shalala and Dr. Elias Zerhouni

Early career researcher Dr. Keila Miles sits down with The Honorable Donna Shalala, Professor, at the University of Miami; Former Secretary of Health and Human Services and Former Representative and Dr. Elias Zerhouni, Professor Emeritus, Radiology and Biomedical Engineering, Johns Hopkins University and former Director, National Institutes of Health to discuss careers in STEM. The discussion touches on diversity, support networks, and how lived experience shape career priorities.

You can find a comprehensive list of speaker biographies here.