Jon Cohen Profile picture
Science magazine staff writer on infectious diseases, outbreaks, immunology, vaccines, global health, genomics, CRISPR, primates, surfing. Views mine.
12 Jan
My mother turns 91 in two days and lives in Los Angeles by herself. She cannot yet access a COVID-19 vaccine and there is no waiting list. I communicated with 5 doctors, 2 nurses, and her insurers, Medicare and Blue Cross to try and sort this out. Here's what I learned:
No one has a clue what to do.

Her primary care giver needs his electronic medical records company to tell California Immunization Registry to let him get and administer vaccines. But his electronic medical records company is overwhelmed and said they'd get back to him.
Three hospital chains that have the vaccine in her area are still only giving shots to their employees. None had a system in place to expand to non-employees.

Her insurers have no idea what to do.
Read 6 tweets
18 Apr 20
At White House presser tonight, a reporter asked Trump about Wuhan Institute of Virology BL-4 lab that some suspect is linked to outbreak origin. She said there's a "report that the NIH under the Obama administration in 2015 gave that lab $3.7 million." Let me try to unravel.
Trump's reply part 1: "I've been hearing about that. We've instructed that if any grants are going to that area, we're looking at it literally about an hour ago and also early in morning, we will end that grant very quickly. But it was granted quite a while ago."
Trump's reply part 2: "...Who was president then, I wonder?"
Read 10 tweets
14 Apr 20
Trump at Rose Garden presser announces he is suspending funding to WHO while a review is conducted. "WHO failed in its basic duty and must be held accountable," says Trump.
"The outbreak could have been contained at its source with very little death," Trump says. "The WHO pushed China's misinformation about the virus."
"It would have been so easy to be truthful and so much death has been caused by their mistakes."
Read 4 tweets
25 Feb 20
Dizzying day on coronavirus front. It's been clear since last Friday--Iran, Italy, South Korean--that COVID-19 is not "very much under control" in U.S. or anywhere else. @kakape and I have story. Hello mitigation. Containment, so yesterday. sciencemag.org/news/2020/02/c…
@kakape But at WHO presser this morning, Bruce Aylward said mission to China he led found that other countries could learn from their successful strategy. Really? Lockdown NYC if there's community spread?
@kakape CDC then holds presser and Nancy Messonier says "disruption of daily life might be severe" in US.
Read 9 tweets