Media Outlets Explore WHO Novel Coronavirus Response, Relationship With China, U.S., Politicization

Washington Post: Americans at World Health Organization transmitted real-time information about coronavirus to Trump administration
“More than a dozen U.S. researchers, physicians, and public health experts, many of them from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, were working full time at the Geneva headquarters of the World Health Organization as the novel coronavirus emerged late last year and transmitted real-time information about its discovery and spread in China to the Trump administration, according to U.S. and international officials. A number of CDC staff members are regularly detailed to work at the WHO in Geneva as part of a rotation that has operated for years. Senior Trump-appointed health officials also consulted regularly at the highest levels with the WHO as the crisis unfolded, the officials said. The presence of so many U.S. officials undercuts President Trump’s assertion that the WHO’s failure to communicate the extent of the threat, born of a desire to protect China, is largely responsible for the rapid spread of the virus in the United States…” (DeYoung et al., 4/19).

Axios: Making the most of an imperfect WHO (Walsh, 4/18).

CNBC: WHO says China revised coronavirus infection data to ‘leave no case undocumented’ (Higgins/Feuer-Dunn, 4/17).

Financial Times: Doctors group accuses WHO of ‘political games’ over coronavirus (Manson/Cookson, 4/17).

The Hill: Birx says first country in pandemic has ‘higher moral obligation’ for transparency after Trump criticism of WHO response (Coleman, 4/19).

The Hill: Japan’s Abe calls for support for World Health Organization after U.S. cuts (Vella, 4/17).

Reuters: China rejects Australia’s questions on its handling of coronavirus (Crossley/Lee, 4/20).

Vox: How to fix the WHO, according to an expert (Kirby, 4/19).

The KFF Daily Global Health Policy Report summarized news and information on global health policy from hundreds of sources, from May 2009 through December 2020. All summaries are archived and available via search.

KFF Headquarters: 185 Berry St., Suite 2000, San Francisco, CA 94107 | Phone 650-854-9400
Washington Offices and Barbara Jordan Conference Center: 1330 G Street, NW, Washington, DC 20005 | Phone 202-347-5270 | Email Alerts: | |

The independent source for health policy research, polling, and news, KFF is a nonprofit organization based in San Francisco, California.