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Yahoo! BooksJul 14, 2020
White House Orders Hospitals to Bypass CDC Even as Agency Director Prepares for ‘the Most Difficult Times'
The White House is now requiring hospitals around the country to change how they report data on COVID-19 patients in a move that effectively bypasses the nation's largest public health agency. In a letter from the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), the agency mandated that hospitals send information on their COVID-19 patients directly to a database managed by HHS rather than the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The order outlining the alteration claims it will help federal agencies move from manual data entry to automated, which would streamline the collection and dissemination of coronavirus data for multiple federal agencies that will have access to the database. The document reads: "As of July 15, 2020, hospitals should no longer report the Covid-19 information in this document to the National Healthcare Safety Network site," a clearinghouse of data on infectious diseases operated by the CDC since 2008.The shift in data collection, long the responsibility of the CDC, arose after Dr. Deborah Birx, the chief medical officer on the White House's coronavirus task force, said in a conference call with hospital executives several weeks ago that healthcare facilities were not adequately reporting their data. CDC employees were shocked at the change, according to The New York Times.Some public health experts, though, said that the move is the latest in a long line of the Trump administration poli
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