Five Former CDC Directors Comment on How the U.S. Mishandled its COVID-19 Response
Science and politics shouldn't intermingle
Five former directors of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) who came together to speak about the coronavirus/COVID-19 on Thursday said repeatedly that the United States is still struggling to deal with the pandemic because of one thing: mixed messages from leadership.
"This is the first public health response where the ground rules weren't set up that we would be driven by the best available public health science," said Dr. Richard Besser, who served as acting director of the CDC in 2009. "So, when you have political leaders and public health leaders coming at this with very different messaging, [and] when you don't see the political leadership supporting public health science, you lose trust.
And the people question whether things are being done because they're the right thing to do scientifically or whether they're being done for political reasons, and that leads to an undermining of the efforts to control something that is truly controllable," he added.
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