News Outlets Examine Trump Administration’s International, Domestic Responses To COVID-19 Outbreak; NPR Reviews $8.3B Emergency Spending Plan

The Hill: U.S. walks tightrope as coronavirus hits adversaries
“The spread of coronavirus around the globe is raising questions about how the United States should help its adversaries mitigate the disease. … Both Iran and North Korea are under harsh U.S. sanctions, even as the international community worries about how their fragile medical systems can handle the disease…” (Kheel, 3/8).

New York Times: Inside Trump Administration, Debate Raged Over What to Tell Public
“…From the beginning, the Trump administration’s attempts to forestall an outbreak of a virus now spreading rapidly across the globe was marked by a raging internal debate about how far to go in telling Americans the truth. Even as the government’s scientists and leading health experts raised the alarm early and pushed for aggressive action, they faced resistance and doubt at the White House — especially from the president — about spooking financial markets and inciting panic…” (Shear et al., 3/8).

NPR: Where That $8.3 Billion In U.S. Coronavirus Funding Will And Won’t Go
“The coronavirus funding bill signed into law by the president Friday puts much more money toward treating and preventing the spread of COVID-19 than his administration requested from Congress last week. The Trump administration’s initial request — in the form of a two-page letter to Congress on Feb. 24 — was for … a total of $2.5 billion. The amount authorized Friday is more than three times that. ‘It’s a significant amount of money,’ says Jen Kates of the Kaiser Family Foundation…” (Simmons-Duffin, 3/6).

POLITICO: Trump’s mismanagement helped fuel coronavirus crisis
“…For six weeks behind the scenes, and now increasingly in public, Trump has undermined his administration’s own efforts to fight the coronavirus outbreak — resisting attempts to plan for worst-case scenarios, overturning a public-health plan upon request from political allies and repeating only the warnings that he chose to hear. Members of Congress have grilled top officials like Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar and Centers for Disease Control Director Robert Redfield over the government’s biggest mistake: failing to secure enough testing to head off a coronavirus outbreak in the United States. But many current and former Trump administration officials say the true management failure was Trump’s…” (Diamond, 3/7).

Washington Post: Squandered time: How the Trump administration lost control of the coronavirus crisis
“…This portrait of the precious weeks that President Trump and his administration frittered away in trying to deal with the coronavirus is the result of interviews with 16 current and former administration officials, state health officials, and outside experts, many of whom spoke on the condition of anonymity to share candid assessments…” (Parker, 3/7).

Additional coverage of the U.S. response to COVID-19, both domestically and abroad, is available from Bloomberg, The Hill, Mother Jones, New York Times (2), POLITICO, Washington Post (2) (3), and Washington Times.

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.

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