Former CDC directors: Trump has politicized science more than any past president. - The Washington Post

         

      The administration is undermining public health

                      

It fouls the mind when a politician makes decisions that are contrary to educated people. Even giving the President the benefit of the doubt he should delegate decisions such as public health decisions to those who know and have the experience to make rational decisions.

                                         
                

Public health authorities throughout the United States already have legal authority locally and at state, levels to make decisions without consulting the Executive branch.  It is the Executive Branches duty to support the states in their decisions.

In addition to those in authority, there are many qualified experts who have served previously in the CDC. such as Tom Frieden, MD, Jeffrey Koplan M.D., and David Satcher, M.D. all who served as Director of the CDC.  

Former CDC Directors Richard Besser, Tom Frieden, Jeffrey Koplan, and David Satcher explain why the agency's guidance on reopening schools must be based on sound science, not political pressure—and centered on safety and health equity.

As America begins the formidable task of getting our kids back to school and all of us back to work safely amid a pandemic that is only getting worse, public health experts face two opponents: COVID-19, but also political leaders and others attempting to undermine the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. As the debate, last week around reopening schools more safely showed these repeated efforts to subvert sound public health guidelines introduce chaos and uncertainty while unnecessarily putting lives at risk.


As of this date, the CDC guidelines, which were designed to protect children, teachers, school staffers, and their families — no matter the state and no matter the politics — have not been altered. It is not unusual for CDC guidelines to be changed or amended during a clearance process that moves through multiple agencies and the White House. But it is extraordinary for guidelines to be undermined after their release. Through last week, and into Monday, the administration continued to cast public doubt on the agency’s recommendations and role in informing and guiding the nation’s pandemic response. On Sunday, Education Secretary Betsy DeVos characterized the CDC guidelines as an impediment to reopening schools quickly rather than what they are: the path to doing so safely. 

CDC updates expands list of people at risk of severe COVID-19 illness only valid reason to change released guidelines is new information and new science — not politics.

Older Adults.                         People of any age with these conditions


The CDC is home to thousands of experts who for decades have fought deadly pathogens such as HIV, Zika, and Ebola. Despite the inevitable challenges of evolving science and the public’s expectation of certainty, these are the people best positioned to help our country emerge from this crisis as safely as possible. Unfortunately, their sound science is being challenged with partisan potshots, sowing confusion and mistrust at a time when the American people need leadership, expertise, and clarity. These efforts have even fueled a backlash against public health officials across the country: Public servants have been harassedthreatened, and forced to resign when we need them most. This is unconscionable and dangerous.

We’re seeing the terrible effect of undermining the CDC play out in our population. Willful disregard for public health guidelines is, unsurprisingly, leading to a sharp rise in infections and deaths. America now stands as a global outlier in the coronavirus pandemic. This tragic indictment of our efforts is even more egregious in light of the disproportionate impact we’ve witnessed on communities of color and lower-income essential workers. China, using the same mitigation tools available to us and with a far larger population, has had just a tiny fraction of the 3.1 million cases reported here. The United States now has more cases and deaths than any other country and the sixth-highest rate of any large country in the world — and we are gaining on the other five. The United States is home to a quarter of the world’s reported coronavirus infections and deaths, despite being home to only 4.4 percent of the global population.

Perhaps when tragedy strikes a sense of humor can confound the true gravity of a situtation. 
 


Former CDC directors: Trump has politicized science more than any past president. - The Washington Post