Center For Public Integrity Publishes Details On New HHS Data Platform For Pandemic Response
Center for Public Integrity: New, Secretive Data System Shaping Federal Pandemic Response
“As deadly Ebola raged in Africa and threatened the United States, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention pinpointed a problem: The agency had many sources of data on the disease but no easy way to combine them, analyze them on a single platform, and share the information with partners. … It spent millions building a new platform. … But at the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic, the CDC still struggled to integrate and share data. … So the CDC turned to outsiders for help. Information technology experts at the federal Department of Health and Human Services took control of the project. Five days later, they had a working platform, dubbed HHS Protect, with the ability to combine, search, and map scores of datasets on deaths, symptoms, tests, ventilators, masks, local ordinances, and more. … The Center for Public Integrity is the first to reveal details about how the platform came to be and how it is now being used…” (Whyte/Fryer-Biggs, 9/22).