Trump Threatens To Fire Fauci After Election; Media Outlets Examine Administration’s Actions On Hospital Data, COVID-19 Testing, Sidelining Scientists, Hydroxychloroquine

AP/Washington Post: Trump threatens to fire Fauci in rift with disease expert
“President Donald Trump is suggesting that he will fire Dr. Anthony Fauci after Tuesday’s election, as his rift with the nation’s top infectious disease expert widens while the nation sees its most alarming outbreak of the coronavirus since the spring…” (Miller, 11/2).

NPR: Internal Documents Reveal COVID-19 Hospitalization Data The Government Keeps Hidden
“…NPR has obtained documents that give a snapshot of data the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services collects and analyzes daily. The documents — reports sent to agency staffers — highlight trends in hospitalizations and pinpoint cities nearing full hospital capacity and facilities under stress. They paint a granular picture of the strain on hospitals across the country that could help local citizens decide when to take extra precautions against COVID-19. Withholding this information from the public and the research community is a missed opportunity to help prevent outbreaks and even save lives, say public health and data experts who reviewed the documents for NPR…” (Huang/Simmons-Duffin, 10/30).

STAT: HHS relaxed oversight of problematic Covid-19 tests despite being told of accuracy concerns
“…In a vast, confusing landscape populated by hundreds of different private companies and labs, some tests are proving problematic, especially when used to screen people who have no symptoms of Covid-19. A STAT investigation found that top officials at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services ended already-minimal oversight of these so-called laboratory developed tests in mid-August, despite being informed that the tests were plagued with quality issues…” (McLaughlin, 11/2).

Washington Post: Trump’s pandemic agenda shoved government scientists aside. They’re attempting an 11th-hour comeback.
“After months of being sidelined or outright attacked by President Trump, a growing number of government scientists and physicians are pushing back against the president’s political agenda when it comes to the pandemic. … The officials taking these stands have been emboldened by a worsening pandemic, an adrift White House and growing indications that Trump’s first term may be his last, say several administration officials who spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss these issues…” (McGinley et al., 11/1).

Additional coverage of the Trump administration’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic is available from Newsweek, POLITICO, and Washington Post (2) (3).

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