Tuesday, Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar weighed in on the report of a draft report from FEMA and the CDC predicting up to 200,000 coronavirus deaths in the United States by June 1.
With many questioning President Donald Trump’s push to reopen the country, Azar told Fox News Channel’s “America’s Newsroom” he has not seen the report and it has not been reviewed by the White House, adding the president’s recommendations on reopening the U.S. economy are “based on the soundest scientific evidence and modeling” rather than draft projections.
“So, I’ve not seen that report,” Azar advised. “I’ve heard about it, obviously. There are hundreds of models that are drafted up to look at various contingencies out in the private-public health world, as well as within our agencies. This apparently is a draft modeling a report of various contingencies prepared by Johns Hopkins. This was not reviewed by the White House or senior leadership or the task force. The president’s recommendations on reopening the American economy are based on the soundest scientific evidence and modeling and forecasting, not draft initial projections that just are floating out there.”
He added, “We actually rely on especially the University of Washington’s model has been quite influential, as well as other work that Dr. Deborah Birx leads, to make sure we’re relying on the soundest, validated, scientific, epidemiological information.”
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