Ebola ‘Czar’ Appointment Politicizes Life-and-Death Issue

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President Obama’s appointment of Ron Klain to coordinate the government’s attempt to combat Ebola signifies that the government’s main concern is to manage pre-election public perceptions, states the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons.

Sen. Chris Coons, D-Del., chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee on African Affairs, called Klain “a brilliant strategist,” who is “known for his ability to manage large, complex operations.”

The complex operations included the Solyndra debacle and the dispensing of billions of dollars of “stimulus” funds.

There will surely be funds to distribute in Klain’s new position. The CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) had a $1 billion payroll in 2013, up 38% since 2007, and claims that it needs much more. There are priorities to consider, since infectious diseases must now compete with many other, more politically appealing missions.

AAPS would like to know where Klain stands on the relative public-health importance of “social norming” in schools, compared with the 2010 dismantling of the Defense Department’s Aeromedical Isolation and Special Medical Augmentation Response Team (AIT-SMART). This was a rapid response unit with worldwide airlift capability designed to safely evacuate and manage contagious patients under Biosafety Level-4 (BSL-4) conditions.

A lobbyist, political operative, and Democrat party loyalist, Klain will almost certainly support the Obama Administration’s policies. The Administration’s refusal to restrict travel from West Africa, while sending American troops into the area, is being questioned by Congress. AAPS, like many Americans, has voiced serious concerns about this disregard of time-tested public health principles.

Klain has no expertise in medicine, public health, or microbiology. But if his job is to change the “optics” of public concerns, he is brilliantly qualified, AAPS concludes.

AAPS believes that protecting American patients from an uncontained outbreak of a lethal disease, and the safety of the personnel caring for them, should trump politics.

The Association of American Physicians and Surgeons (AAPS) is a national organization representing physicians in all specialties, founded in 1943 to preserve private medicine and the patient-physician relationship.

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