We have come a long way since the early days of 2020. Back then, I was the head of North Carolina’s Department of Health and Human Services and working alongside Gov. Roy Cooper to navigate the uncertainty, the challenges and the fear around COVID-19. My extended family was in New York, the epicenter of the U.S. outbreak. I didn’t realize then that it would be over a year until I saw them in person again. All I wanted was for them to be safe.
Now, as I lead the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, we are in such a different place — no federal mandates, no travel restrictions. With vaccines, testing and treatment, we are once again enjoying fun-filled family vacations and celebrating milestones together.