Being a celebrity has its share of perks — one of them, apparently, is having exclusive access to the nation's top infectious diseases specialist, a.k.a. Dr. Anthony Fauci.
As CNN reports, the doctor has revealed that around the beginning of the novel coronavirus pandemic, he invited a panel of stars to a private Zoom session in which they could ask him anything they wanted about COVID-19. On the guest list? Kim Kardashian, Ashton Kutcher, Mila Kunis, Orlando Bloom, Katy Perry, 2 Chainz, Gwyneth Paltrow and a couple dozen more.
Fauci, who is the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and a member of the White House coronavirus task force, hosted the hourlong Zoom at the end of April in hopes that the celebs would use their public platforms to help spread awareness about the information he revealed.
As it turned out, they all had plenty of things to ask him, which weren't much different from what any average Joe would be concerned about: "They wanted to know about what they could do to stay safe, about wearing masks and avoiding crowds," Fauci related.
They also reportedly quizzed him about more granular concerns, such as whether it is safe or not to order takeout food, and whether one can eat it out of the takeout container. "I was impressed by the questions they asked, by their level of sophistication," he said.
He felt that it turned out to be a good use of his valuable time. "Each of these stars has enormous numbers of followers on their social media accounts," Fauci explained. "I could say to them, for example, it's important to wear a mask, and they get on their accounts and say 'wear a mask' and it goes out to an additional couple of million people."
A source familiar with the situation says that Kardashian was the brainchild behind the celeb-packed information session. The reality star's ears reportedly pricked up when surgeon general Dr. Jerome Adams referenced her sister, Kylie Jenner, during a television appearance, saying, "We need to get Kylie Jenner and social media influencers out there, in helping folks understand...this is serious, this is absolutely serious."
Kardashian then allegedly put together a list of celebrities and approached Fauci's office with the idea. "She wanted to speak with someone, to ask questions, so she could spread accurate information," the source noted.