Michelle Fiscus, MD

A Journey of Resiliency and Reinvention

Dr. Michelle Fiscus was charged with leading the COVID-19 vaccination effort in Tennessee. In July 2021, she was fired for communicating Tennessee’s mature minor doctrine to vaccine providers. What ensued was months of international media attention, political retaliation, a decision to move her family out of state, and a personal and professional crisis. Dr. Fiscus will share her unbelievable story and her journey of resiliency and reinvention.


By the end of the plenary session, participants will:

  1. Understand how politics interfered with public health pandemic response.

  2. Understand the importance of advocacy.

  3. Be able to cite at least two ways to advance a non-clinical career.

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Dr. Michelle Fiscus is a board-certified pediatrician and public health advocate who practiced general pediatrics in Franklin, Tennessee, for seventeen years before transitioning to a career in public health in 2016. She served as the medical director of the Tennessee Department of Health’s Vaccine-Preventable Diseases and Immunization Program and led the state’s COVID-19 vaccination efforts until July 2021, when she and her family relocated to Virginia. She now serves as the inaugural Chief Medical Officer for the Association of Immunization Managers and is president and CEO of Fiscus Health Consulting, which advises national organizations on public health policy and strategies.

Dr. Fiscus is a past-president of the Tennessee Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics and now serves on the Board of Directors of the American Academy of Pediatrics as District IV Chair representing Tennessee, Kentucky, Virginia, and the Carolinas.