Trump administration strips CDC of control of coronavirus data

The Trump administration has ordered hospitals to bypass CDC and send all COVID-19 patient information to a central database in Washington beginning on Wednesday.

The Trump administration has ordered hospitals to bypass CDC and send all COVID-19 patient information to a central database in Washington beginning on Wednesday. In its new guidance, HHS said that going forward, hospitals should report detailed information on a daily basis directly to the new centralized system, which is managed by TeleTracking, a health data firm with headquarters in Pittsburgh. However, if hospitals were already reporting such information to their states, they could continue to do so if they received a written release saying the state would handle reporting. Officials say the change will streamline data gathering and assist the White House coronavirus task force in allocating scarce supplies like remdesivir, the first drug shown to be effective against the virus. Both the CDC network and the TeleTracking system set up by HHS rely on so-called push data, meaning hospital employees must manually enter data, rather than the government tapping into an electronic system to obtain the information. Public health experts have long expressed concerns that the Trump administration is politicizing science and undermining its health experts.