Thursday, October 16, 2014

No. 119 - October 16, 2014 – Fire the Center for Disease Control.

by Melinda Pillsbury-Foster

Dr. Tom Frieden is the Director for the Center for Disease Control. Tom blogs and tweets. Because so many revelations are coming out about the unpreparedness of the CDC to cope with an Ebola pandemic I decided to find out about Tom, who is in the driver's seat on the issue here in the United States.

Tom's most recent blog included this reassurance. “The United States is helping lead the global response to the epidemic, but we cannot do it alone. That is why President Obama launched our sixth Grand Challenge. Fighting Ebola: A Grand Challenge for Development is designed provide health care workers on the front lines with better tools to battle Ebola.”

The first question which sprang to mind was, “what does this guy mean?” I discovered by following the link leading to the 'Grand Challenge for Development.' In a nut shell, Tom wants people to get together and innovate and share their ideas.

This is disturbing. I remember Tom being quoted as saying, some time ago, that we were entirely prepared for a break out of Ebola; there was nothing to worry about. Joining together in conversation about ideas when a second health worker has just merrily traveled on a plane to multiple locations, including Cleveland, does not strike me as good planning.

I thought maybe there would be more sign of Tom knowing what he is doing in his tweets. I went to look. I found, “2nd Texas health worker #Ebola case is very concerning. My thoughts are w/patient & their family.” Kind though, but not reassuring. Next, #Ebola situation is changing daily. We will continue to share what we know when we know it.” This also fails the reassuring test.

Cleveland is not far from here. Residents of Cleveland, Fort Lauderdale and Dallas and other connecting cities for the 132 passengers who shared that flight could be infecting the whole US now. Some of them may be in Ashtabula, as I write.

Also, the World Health Organization rebutted the 21 day incubation period, saying it could be as long as 42 days.

But wait! Tom says in a communication dated October 2 we have nothing to worry about. Tom said, “Every health care worker must meticulously follow every single infection control protection we recommend.”

But Tom, they did that. What do you have to say now – or should we wait for the next tweet?

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