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Fauci donates personal COVID-19 virus model to Smithsonian

Fauci donates personal COVID-19 virus model to Smithsonian
© National Museum of American History

Anthony FauciAnthony FauciIowa governor touts receiving Johnson & Johnson vaccine amid pause: 'I would do it again' Jill Biden to appear in 'Sesame Street' documentary Despite July 4 timeline, the US is a long way from herd immunity MORE, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, donated his personal 3D model of the COVID-19 virus to the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. 

Fauci donated the model during the museum’s “Great Americans Program” on Tuesday, during which the nation’s leading infectious disease expert was honored with the Institute’s Great Americans medal, the Smithsonian confirmed in a statement.

Fauci has used the model as an educational tool to explain COVID-19 and the spread of the pandemic to elected officials and the public for approximately a year, since the novel coronavirus began spreading widely in the United States.

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The pink and blue model of the SARS-CoV-2 virion was made with a 3D printer, the Smithsonian said in the Tuesday statement. It will be housed within the national medicine and science collections. 

Dr. FauciAnthony FauciIowa governor touts receiving Johnson & Johnson vaccine amid pause: 'I would do it again' Jill Biden to appear in 'Sesame Street' documentary Despite July 4 timeline, the US is a long way from herd immunity MORE has helped save millions of lives and advanced the treatment and our understanding of infectious and immunologic diseases across more than five decades of public service,” Anthea Hartig, the museum’s Elizabeth MacMillan director, said in the Tuesday statement. “His humanitarianism and dedication truly exemplify what it means to be a Great American." 

The Smithsonian confirmed that it is also collecting other materials to honor Fauci’s public health work during the COVID-19 pandemic, including materials on his now-viral ceremonial opening pitch at the Washington Nationals baseball park last year.

The Fauci memorabilia is part of the museum’s effort to collect pieces for a future exhibition titled “In Sickness and In Health,” which will examine “200 years of medicine in the U.S. including COVID-19,” the museum confirmed in the Tuesday statement. 

The Great Americans medal is presented to up to two Americans annually and has previously honored former Secretaries of State Madeline Albright and Colin PowellColin Luther PowellOvernight Defense: Biden makes his Afghanistan decision Colin Powell on Afghanistan: 'We've done all we can do' Is nonpartisan effectiveness still possible? MORE, among others.