AG Healey calling for reinstatement of CDC’s control over COVID-19 data

BOSTON — Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey is taking action on a Covid-19 data reporting issue.

The White House recently issued a directive stripping the CDC’s control over Covid-19 data and requiring hospitals to report their coronavirus data directly to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

In addition, federal officials have added 50 other data points that have to be collected.

Hospitals had one week to make the changes, which led to significant delays and issues with data integrity.

Healey is leading a multi-state effort comprised of other 21 attorneys general who are all calling on the Trump administration to immediately withdraw the directive.

In a letter sent today to the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services Secretary Alex M. Azar II, the attorneys general urged the department to restore the CDC as the primary authority over and source of information regarding Covid-19 data.

“This new directive from President Trump is as absurd as it is dangerous – and it’s not the first time he’s tried to hide information that is inconvenient for him,” said AG Healey. “As this pandemic continues to claim lives across our country, it’s imperative that our nation’s public health experts have full authority and control over all coronavirus data – the health and safety of all Americans depend on it.”

The letter goes on to explain that the decision to bypass the CDC during the pandemic has harmed the country’s ability to track the crisis in certain communities, risks compromising data for millions of Americans and undermines public confidence in any reports about the novel coronavirus coming from the government.

Along with that, the letter highlights the CDC has always been the nation’s authority on infectious disease control and prevention, and that local public health authorites and researchers rely heavily on the accuracy of that data.

Read the full letter here.

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