Nearly two years since the start of the pandemic, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has continued to face a slew of bipartisan criticism for its “confusing” and “shifting” COVID-19 recommendations.
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The public health agency was criticized for its “abrupt change in guidance” last week after reducing the recommended quarantine period for asymptomatic COVID-positive people from ten to five days. While CDC Director Rochelle Walensky said the updated guidance was based on evidence that COVID-19 transmission only occurs early on in the infection, government and other public health officials are now asking the CDC “to communicate more often and more clearly.” CNN (Left bias) reported on Friday that the White House has grown increasingly frustrated with the agency over its “messaging of public health guidelines,” with one former senior Biden administration official suggesting that the CDC is “overthinking” its communications. Additionally, the American Medical Association (AMA) released a statement on Wednesday that criticized Walensky’s “counterproductive” directive. “According to the CDC’s own rationale for shortened isolation periods for the general public, an estimated 31 percent of people remain infectious 5 days after a positive COVID-19 test,” said AMA president Dr. Gerald E. Harmon. Responding to these criticisms, Walensky told reporters on Friday that she is “committed to continue to improve” and pledged to speak directly to the public on a more consistent basis.
Both left- and right-rated outlets seemed to disapprove of the CDC’s new isolation guidelines. Some left-rated outlets said the CDC’s handling of the isolation guidance was “a case study in how to confuse the public” and emphasized how Walensky has “no prior government experience.” Other left-rated voices called the CDC’s recent actions “a communications disaster” and further denounced the health agency for “prioritizing businesses over saving lives.” Many right-rated outlets highlighted the “bipartisan scorn” that the CDC is facing and continued to label the novel coronavirus as the “CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus.” Other right-rated voices downplayed data released by the health agency on Friday that showed an increase in young kids being hospitalized with COVID-19, noting that the data included “kids who were taken to the hospital for issues other than COVID-19” and then subsequently received a positive test result.