Tag Archives: CDC

CDC expands investigation into military handling of dangerous disease samples

Does this make you feel safer? The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has now expanded its investigation of the Defense Department’s handling of dangerous infectious disease samples.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is expanding its investigation into possible mishandling and improper shipment by Defense Department laboratories of organisms that cause deadly diseases, including plague and encephalitis, U.S. officials said Thursday. Concerns about the handling of those samples led the Army to announce a moratorium on production, shipping and handling of toxins at nine labs last week. But officials did not acknowledge until Thursday that plague and encephalitis samples were involved.

When asked why the Pentagon didn’t disclose the new concerns about plague and encephalitis last week, Pentagon press secretary Peter Cook said that officials were trying to be as forthcoming as possible “without alarming the public.” [emphasis mine]

In other words, the Defense Department withheld critical information because it made them look bad and illustrated how dangerous their mishandling of dangeous diseases has been.

Other than that, all is well!

Possible ebola exposure at CDC

Government marches on! As many as a dozen scientists might have been mistakenly exposed to ebola at an Atlanta CDC lab.

The potential exposure took place Monday when scientists conducting research on the virus at a high-security lab mistakenly put a sample containing the potentially infectious virus in a place where it was transferred for processing to another CDC lab, also in Atlanta on the CDC campus.

The CDC statement is remarkably uninformative. From what little they say, it appears as if the sample was left out uncovered in the lab as people came in and out. It also suggests that this unsecured sample was also transferred improperly to another lab.

No need to worry however. Just like its previous investigation of errors in the handling of anthrax, CDC officials are on the case, doing investigations and writing press releases, just so us ordinary citizens won’t get worried and cut their funds.

“Medical science doesn’t support official rhetoric on ebola.”

The essay is long, but incredibly detailed, worth reading, and illustrates nicely how little politicians and bureaucrats understand the uncertainty of science and knowledge. Their focus is power and control, and thus they often will say anything that they think will help them maintain that power and control, even if it is an outright lie or misstatement.

In the case of ebola, the misstatements and lies have been frequent, bald-faced, and have done nothing to help these politicians and bureaucrats maintain power and control. If anything, their willingness to say things that were simply not true or not yet known has served to undermine their effectiveness while fueling the public’s increasing distrust and disbelief in anything they say.

That Barack Obama is lying or overstating his flawed knowledge on this subject does not surprise me. That some scientists at the CDC are doing so is a much greater concern.

CDC deletes ebola info from website

Incompetence: One day after posting information that said ebola could be spread by a sneeze, the Centers for Disease Control has deleted that information from its webpage.

It could be the deleted webpage was wrong, which raises the question: Why had they posted it in the first place? Or it could be that the deleted webpage was right, which raises the question: Why did they delete it?

Or it could be that they haven’t the slightest idea what they are doing, which raises the question: Why do so many Americans still want to put their trust, and their lives, at the mercy of these government hacks?

Ebola patient arrives in U.S.

Doctors in charge of the specialized isolation unit for treating dangerous infectious diseases are confident that they will be able to treat the infected patients safely without the disease escaping.

I have complete confidence that a well run facility like this, with modern technology, could keep the disease isolated. The key words, however, are “well run.” I pray that this description still applies to Emory University Hospital.

CDC suspends shipments of dangerous pathogens

Due to a series of recent errors and mishaps in the shipment of dangerous pathogens such as anthrax and influenza, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has suspended future shipments while it conducts an investigation.

After news of the anthrax exposure broke on 19 June, the CDC began investigating why its lab workers did not follow proper procedure to inactivate Bacillus anthracis spores before shipping them to another lab on the agency’s Atlanta campus. The receiving lab was not equipped to handle the pathogen, and once the mistake was discovered, more than 70 people were pre-emptively treated for anthrax infection. The CDC now says that the lab never needed to work with B. anthracis in the first place; another bacterium would have sufficed to test the diagnostic equipment that the lab was evaluating. The good news, Frieden says, is that the CDC now does not believe that anyone was actually exposed to anthrax spores.

But the agency’s ongoing investigation has revealed more bad news: on 12–13 March, the CDC’s influenza lab contaminated a harmless flu strain with the highly dangerous H5N1 variety, and sent it to a laboratory operated by the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) in Athens, Georgia. The mistake was discovered on 23 May, but Frieden says that he was not notified until 9 July. “Why it took six weeks for that to be made apparent, I can think of no valid explanation,” he says. The USDA lab was equipped to handle highly infectious agents, and the agency is confident that there were no exposures.