A doctor with family ties to Jared Kushner solicited advice for handling the coronavirus outbreak on Facebook — and then apparently passed along the tip to the White House senior adviser.
Kurt Kloss, whose fashion model daughter is married to Kushner’s brother, posted a query just before midnight Wednesday seeking recommendations from fellow emergency room physicians on fighting the deadly COVID-19 outbreak, reported The Spectator.
“I have direct channel to person now in charge at White House,” Kurt Kloss wrote in the post.
Hundreds of physicians responded by the following morning, and Kloss explained that he had sought out their advice to pass along to Kushner, who is President Donald Trump’s senior adviser and son-in-law.
Trump had appointed Vice President Mike Pence to oversee the coronavirus task force, but Kushner has taken a more active role in the face of mounting criticism of White House’s response to the public health emergency, according to two sources familiar with the situation.
“[Kushner] is now directly involved in the response to this,” posted Kloss, whose daughter Karlie Kloss is married to Kushner’s younger brother Joshua Kushner.
One of the other doctors in the Facebook group on Feb. 27 questioned the decision to place Pence in charge of the response over Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar, and Kloss seemed to agree with the criticism.
“The only thing that gave me any sense of confidence was that Dr. Anthony Faucci [sic] was on that stage,” Kloss responded, referring to the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.
The EM Docs social media group has nearly 22,000 members worldwide, and they must show their credentials before they’re approved to join.
Kloss solicited the recommendations hours after Trump’s brief Oval Office address, which has been widely criticized and sent markets into a panic the following morning.
“If you were in charge of Federal response to the Pandemic what would your recommendation be. Please only serious responses,” Kloss posted. “I have direct channel to person now in charge at White House.”
The posts have since been removed, but a group member shared screen shots of the posts with Politico.
“Tonight I was asked by Jared through my son-in-law for my recommendations, that’s when I turned to you my fellow BAFERD’s for help,” Kloss posted, using the acronym for the nickname Bad Ass Fucking Emergency Room Doctors. “Between patients tonight I have reviewed your responses and will summarize what I am sending to Jared for your PEER review before I send it.”
“Jared is reading now,” Kloss later informed the group.