Pandemic expert Theresa MacPhail of the Stevens Institute of Technology said this week that she “couldn’t have been more wrong” about the way the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) handled the novel coronavirus outbreak.
MacPhail told Vice that she expected the CDC to have a more “robust” response to the virus than China had.
“I just assumed that the U.S. system would be a little bit better, would be a little bit more robust and do more testing and containment than China was able to do, and I just couldn’t have been more wrong,” she lamented.
According to MacPhail, something changed at the CDC after President Barack Obama left office.
“One thing that’s super different is that the CDC in 2009 provided central leadership,” she said of the H1N1 outbreak. “They were proactively reaching out to state, regional, and local health officials saying, ‘Here’s what you need to be doing. Here’s what this should look like.’ And people did it.”
“I am scared and enraged because there’s no central authority here,” MacPhail added. “I don’t understand what’s going on.The CDC isn’t giving press briefings. They’re just absent. And that could be because the administration is muzzling them. Or it could mean that there’s disarray inside the CDC. And I guess all of that will come out.”
Read the entire interview from Vice.