Tuesday, May 19, 2020

Obsessed With Magic Bullets

But punishing the [CDC] by marginalising and hobbling it is not the solution.  The Administration is obsessed with magic bullets -- vaccines, new medicines, or a hope that the virus will simply disappear.  But only a steadfast reliance on basic public health principles, like test, trace, and isolate, will see the emergency brought to an end, and this requires an effective national public health agency.  The CDC needs a director who can provide leadership without the threat of being silenced and who has the technical capacity to lead today's complicated effort.

The Trump administration's further erosion of the CDC will harm global cooperation in science and public health, as it is trying to do by defunding WHO.  A strong CDC is needed to respond to public health threats, both domestic and international, and to help prevent the next inevitable pandemic.  Americans must put a president in the White House come January, 2021, who will understand that public health should not be guided by partisan politics.

-- Editorial published in The Lancet, "Reviving the US CDC", 16 May 2020

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