Michigan Hires ‘Tech Provider to Democratic Campaigns’ to Collect Medical Data on Coronavirus Patients

In a pool photo provided by the Michigan Office of the Governor, Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer addresses the state during a speech in Lansing, Mich., Monday, March 30, 2020. (Michigan Office of the Governor via AP, Pool)
Michigan Office of the Governor via AP, Pool

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s (D) administration has hired a progressive campaign organization to collect private medical data on coronavirus patients.

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services said in a release:

As part of efforts to continue expanding COVID-19 testing and contact tracing of potentially exposed Michiganders, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) again expanded its testing criteria to include all essential workers still reporting to work in person, whether they have symptoms or not, and launched a large-scale effort with more than 2,000 volunteers to expand contact tracing capacity. …

Contact tracing is a proven public health strategy that involves identifying those affected by COVID-19 and interviewing friends, families and others near that person about their contacts and symptoms. MDHHS is contracting with Great Lakes Community Engagement, a firm that specializes in outreach campaigns to engage citizens, and Every Action VAN, a voter/individual contact platform used by non-profits, to provide software to help organize remote phone banking and track information and contacts.

“Great Lakes Community Engagement” has no discernible presence on the Internet. A request from Breitbart News to MDHHS for more information on the seemingly obscure organization was not immediately answered.

“Every Action VAN” is “trusted by” Planned Parenthood, SEIU, NARAL, and NextGen Climate, according to its website.

Related to that company is NGP VAN, which bills itself as “the leading political technology provider to Democratic & progressive campaigns & organizations.”

Livingston County Commissioner Wes Nakagiri was the first to discover the connection after he volunteered to perform contact tracing for the state.

According to Nakagiri’s website:

When performing contact tracing, volunteers are assigned to assist Public Health officials in reaching out to citizens who have come into contact with someone who has been diagnosed with the coronavirus.  The volunteers make phone calls to convey important instructions to citizens who have a higher likelihood of contracting the coronavirus. Additionally, volunteers could ask personal questions such as: How is your health now? Do you have shortness of breath? Do you have abdominal pain? Can you tell me the names and ages of persons living in your household? What is your email address? The volunteers then log the results of these phone calls into a database ostensibly for use by medical professionals.

Nakagiri said the training documents tell volunteers to enter confidential medical information gained from contact tracing “into the NGP VAN database.”

“This enables NGP VAN to share this confidential information with both the MDHHS and Democrat candidates,” Nakagiri said.

“Providing confidential information collected from contact tracing to Democrat candidates is an egregious violation of the public trust.”

Kyle Olson is a reporter for Breitbart News. Follow him on Twitter and like him on Facebook.

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