WASHINGTON, July 18 (Reuters) - Dr Anthony Fauci, the chief medical adviser to the White House, confirmed that he will retire by the end of President Joe Biden's first term, but it could come much earlier than that, the infectious disease expert told Reuters in an interview on Monday (Jul 18).

"I haven't made an announcement of my retirement, but it could be anywhere from now until then," Fauci said in the telephone interview. "I don't know yet."

Fauci, 81, in late November 2021 told Reuters that he was "not even remotely contemplating" retirement.

He has been the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) since 1984, and in 2020 became the face of the United States government's efforts to contain the COVID-19 pandemic.

When he does leave government service, Fauci said that he has no intention of completely retiring. "I'm going to continue working because I still have a lot of energy and passion about public health, and global public health," he said.