Fauci Under Fire for Royalty Payments

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Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, attends a hearing in Washington, D.C., January 11, 2022. | Image by Greg Nash, National Review via Reuters

Dr. Anthony Fauci, the Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases run by The National Institutes of Health (NIH), came under fire recently for royalty payments he and other NIH scientists received.

A report by watchdog group Open The Books (OTB) shows that the NIH and some of its employees received over $350 million in royalty payments from various third-party payers.

These third-party payers, many likely pharmaceutical companies, credited NIH scientists like Fauci as “co-inventors” and patent license holders for various pharmaceutical products and treatments. They compensated them for their work and even paid the NIH itself in some cases.

NIH produced information and records on royalty payments to Judicial Watch, which filed a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit on the watchdog group’s behalf in October 2021.

The investigation revealed that between September 2009 and September 2014, third-party payers dispersed 22,100 royalty payments totaling roughly $134 million to approximately 1,700 NIH scientists.

Fauci himself received 23 royalty payments during that time, but the exact amount of the payments, in all cases, was redacted by the NIH.

The report argues that NIH gives out billions of dollars in grants and funding every year to thousands of recipients, many of whom are pharmaceutical companies. Some of that money then returns to the NIH and its scientists through royalty payments, setting up a potential conflict of interest.

“NIH is a revolving door of tens of billions of dollars in government grant-making coupled with hundreds of millions of dollars in private – non-transparent – royalty payments,” writes Adam Andrzejewski, CEO and co-founder of OTB.

“Because those payments enrich the agency and its scientists, each and every royalty payment could be a potential conflict of interest and needs disclosure.”

He claims that Fauci is the highest-paid federal employee, earning $456,028 in 2021. However, this income does not include any royalty payments.

The royalty payment records provided by NIH to OTB do not include the individual amounts paid to NIH employees nor the identity of who made the payments. NIH redacted all of that information.

Recently at a congressional appropriations hearing, NIH Acting Director Lawrence Tabak testified that research functions and bureaucratic decision-making functions are separated when products are developed or evaluated, thus limiting the possibility of conflicts of interest.

However, Tabak did admit that the dynamic does give the “appearance” of a conflict of interest.

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Elinor Ann deMendonca
Elinor Ann deMendonca
9 months ago

OMG how these “politicians” increase their “earnings” is a wonder to the rest of us who actually work for a living. Fauci got paid for discovering WuHan Virus which earned many people into the Billions of Dollars and he is still in the game.!!!!!