CDC Director Robert Redfield wouldn’t condemn President Trump’s move to halt funding to the World Health Organization, but insisted that its longstanding partnership with the CDC won’t change, during an interview on CBS Wednesday morning.
During the White House coronavirus task force briefing Tuesday night, Trump announced that the U.S. will halt funding to the WHO while a review is underway. He also accused the largely U.S.-funded organization of “severely mismanaging and covering up” the spread of COVID-19.
Asked whether Trump’s move to cut off funding to the WHO is dangerous, Redfield dodged by simply saying that the WHO has been a “longstanding partner” for the CDC and that they’re continuing to work together to “fight health crises all around the world.” That includes ongoing joint efforts to end the Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
In response to the impact of cutting off funding to the WHO amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Redfield reiterated that the organization is a “long-term” and “great partner” for the CDC.
“We’re going to continue to do all we can together to try to limit this,” Redfield said, referring to COVID-19. “Those decisions that are going to be made above, related to some of the geopolitical issues, I have to leave to those that really have that expertise. But for me and for CDC, in the public health arena, we’re continuing to work side-by-side with WHO to do the best that we can to limit the spread of disease and to protect the American people.”
Redfield’s latest remarks aren’t the first to be at odds with the President’s.
Do you view cutting off funding to @WHO as dangerous? — @AnthonyMasonCBS@CDCDirector: You know, I'm just going to say that W.H.O. has been a longstanding partner for CDC. We've worked together to fight health crises around the world. We continue to do that." pic.twitter.com/nf4gJs3Pob
— CBS This Morning (@CBSThisMorning) April 15, 2020