Brett Giroir, asst secretary at HHS, just told a Senate committee that recent declines in #Covid19 cases & deaths could reverse "if we don't continue to follow the national plan."
There's a national plan?
2. Bob Kadlec, HHS assistant secretary for preparedness & response, just told the Senate committee about his cloth mask distribution program. What's that, you wonder? @statnews has you covered — even if you didn't get one of the free masks. #Covid19 statnews.com/2020/08/13/the…
3. @CDCgov director Robert Redfield tells Senate Committee he was "deeply saddened" to read of HHS communications director Michael Caputo's claims about the CDC. nytimes.com/2020/09/14/us/…
4. Dick Durbin puts Brett Giroir on the hot seat over Trump's claim that testing creates cases.
Not true, Giroir said. Testing finds cases that are there, if they are there.
5. Senator Dick Durbin asks Kadlec, Giroir & Redfield about the plan President Trump has touted as a replacement for the ACA, Obamacare.
Do you know of such a plan?
All three: Not my lane, don't know anything about a replacement plan.
6. @CDCgov director Robert Redfield had just told a Senate committee it will likely be summer or early autumn 2021 before most Americans can be vaccinated against #Covid19 and the broadcast went blank.
Summer or early autumn 2021.
7. @CDCgov director Robert Redfield tells Senate committee face masks may offer more protection on an individual level than #Covid19 vaccines when vaccines become available.
Puzzled.
8. @CDCgov director Redfield tells the Senate Committee it's going to take 6-9 months to vaccinate Americans against #Covid19.
9. @CDCgov director Redfield says CDC needs $5B-$6B to distribute #Covid19 vaccines — and it doesn't have the money.
Bob Kadlec, assistant secretary, says HHS needs an additional $20B for #Covid19 vaccines — and it doesn't have the money.

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More from @HelenBranswell

29 Sep
#Covid19 thread: So the global death toll — which is certainly an underestimate — has topped 1M deaths.
10 months ago we had no inkling a new coronavirus was soon about to change life on earth for possibly years.
This is so not just like seasonal flu. Image
2. In fact, this pandemic is on track to be the worst the world has seen since the 1918 Spanish Flu. Deaths to #Covid19 have far surpassed the 2009 H1N1 flu pandemic, which is thought to have killed fewer than a quarter million people worldwide. journals.plos.org/plosmedicine/a… Image
3. The #Covid19 pandemic, which is nowhere near over, has killed at least as many people was the 1968 H3N2 pandemic, estimated to have killed 1M people around the world & 100,000 Americans. (Covid has already doubled that figure.) cdc.gov/flu/pandemic-r… Image
Read 4 tweets
25 Sep
1. #Influenza experts from around the world have been meeting virtually with WHO experts over the past week or so to decide which flu strains ought to be in the 2021 winter flu shot for the southern hemisphere. Their report is here: who.int/influenza/vacc…
2. The Trump administration is withdrawing the US from @WHO next year & is already blocking cooperation with the global health agency in many circumstances. BUT: US-govt agencies (CDC-FDA) & the WHO flu collaborating center at St Jude Hospital took part in this meeting.
3. The gathered scientists had fewer strains than usual on which to base their recommendations. Pressures of #Covid19 on surveillance systems & less transmission of flu potentially due to travel restrictions are cited as the reason why.
Read 5 tweets
3 Sep
1. Yesterday was a big day for @statnews; we published our 2000th First Opinion, the name we use for op ed pieces. That milestone represents a ton of work by the one-man team of @PJSkerrett. 👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻
The entire collection lives here: statnews.com/category/first… #2000STATOpinions
2. If you're not signed up for @statnews daily First Opinions newsletter, today's a great day to rectify that omission. You can sign up right here: statnews.com/signup/first-o… #2000STATOpinions
3. Here's an example of a @statnews First Opinion that's as important today as it was when @PJSkerrett published it in early July: Partisan politics is impeding the #Covid19 response. #2000STATOpinions statnews.com/2020/07/04/get…
Read 4 tweets
29 Aug
1. Terrific piece on how @WHO was overcome by #Covid19, by @betswrites & @drewfhinshaw. WHO has taken a boatload of criticism for its handling of the pandemic. This piece explains why it acts the way it does: WHO is what countries want it to be. wsj.com/articles/the-w…
2. It was common early in the #Covid19 pandemic for people to wax nostalgic about Gro Brundtland, @WHO's director general during SARS; she called out China for hiding the new disease.
Brundtland only served one term as DG; she didn't run for a second. Unclear she could have won.
3. After SARS, WHO's member countries — which give it its marching orders & outline what it can & cannot do — rewrote rules to try to prevent another SARS. They did not want someone to do what Brundtland had done to China.
Read 6 tweets
25 Aug
1. Short #polio thread: Africa was declared free of wild polio today. The entire continent has gone at least 3 years without discovering evidence of circulation of wild polio virus. Generations of children will be spared the scourge of polio. polioeradication.org/news-post/afri…
2. Wild #polio viruses now only circulate in Pakistan & Afghanistan, which don't seem to be doing a bang-up job stopping spread. There are 55% more cases this year to date than last year in the same period. It's now high season for polio, so, the number is going to climb. Image
3. The joy one would normally feel for Africa's accomplishment — driving out wild #polio — is tempered by the fact the continent has a huge problem with the spread of vaccine-derived polioviruses, which can paralyze kids just as the wild viruses do. Image
Read 4 tweets
21 Aug
1. The #Ebola outbreak in DRC's Équateur province has now hit 100 cases & 43 deaths. Efforts to stop it are not going well.
“With 100 Ebola cases in less than 100 days, the outbreak ... is evolving in a concerning way,” said Dr Matshidiso Moeti, WHO regional director for Africa.
2. Little day-to-day information has emerged, other than reports on numbers. So it's been very hard to know what is going on in this #Ebola outbreak. But it's been clear for a while from the numbers that the response is struggling. Finally, today, an update from @WHOAFRO.
3. DRC is grappling with multiple disease outbreaks, which isn't helping. International funding appears not to be coming in — or at least not to the degree needed. afro.who.int/news/ebola-out…
Read 6 tweets

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