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Fumbling in the Red Zone

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  • Fumbling in the Red Zone

    The problem with COVID-19 testing:

    https://www.cnn.com/2020/04/20/polit...nvs/index.html


    As coronavirus test kits were malfunctioning in public health labs across the country, Dr. Robert Redfield repeatedly assured his fellow task force officials in February that the problem would be quickly solved.


    The White House had little reason to doubt Redfield. His agency, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, had a storied history as the preeminent testing authority.

    Even as the problem persisted and days stretched into weeks, Redfield and Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar -- then the lead of the coronavirus task force -- provided "assurances it was being dealt with," a senior administration official said.

    Most other members of the recently created White House task force -- officials from the chief of staff's office and the National Security Council -- weren't public health experts. They placed their faith in the nation's top health officials.
    "When the CDC, who was has always been able to handle these things -- when they tell us they have this thing under control, who are we to say, 'You double PhDs, MDs who have been doing this for years, no you're wrong,'" said the administration official.

    It took roughly three weeks to sort out the failed test kits, far longer than the CDC had anticipated. Along the way, regulators would discover the lab producing the test kits was contaminated, likely causing the tests to malfunction, according to a senior administration official...

    ...

    It was the sort of problem that Trump boasts he's well-suited to solve: Test kits desperately needed to track and help control the rapidly spreading coronavirus were partly tangled in government red tape that needed to be cut.

    The clock was ticking.

    Lives were on the line.

    But for weeks, the President, who casts himself as a take-charge, hands-on, problem-solver-in-chief continued to publicly downplay the entire coronavirus threat even as the debacle over a botched government test played out.

    There was a leadership vacuum in the West Wing as acting chief of staff Mick Mulvaney had fallen out of favor with Trump, but his replacement, Mark Meadows, had not yet been named.

    The result was no early, coordinated push from the White House to scale up testing, perhaps by pursuing alternatives, like authorizing the test the World Health Organization had distributed to other countries or soliciting help from labs in commercial, hospital or university settings.

    In fact, the government had a signed agreement to deal with just such a crisis. In 2018, on the heels of the Zika virus scare, officials realized the need to engage commercial labs in testing at the outset of an outbreak. But the pact was not enacted to speed up testing in the early stages of the Covid-19 response.

    As for the President, he was still in denial and publicly predicting the virus would "miraculously" go away...


    We are not now that strength which in old days
    Moved earth and heaven; that which we are we are; One equal temper of heroic hearts
    Made weak by time and fate but strong in will
    To strive to seek to find and not to yield.

  • #2
    And yet more stilted opinion from CNN the non-news news outlet.... Let's put it this way. I'd believe a crackpot like Alex Jones and Info Wars before I'd take CNN's opinion on anything. They've gotten that bad.

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