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IDSA Responds to President Trump’s Comments on COVID-19 Preparedness

By IDSA President Thomas M. File, Jr., M.D., FIDSA, MSc

As international and federal health officials have noted this week, the accelerated spread of COVID-19 calls for greatly intensified responses everywhere to the immediate threat of worldwide epidemics of the disease, and to the looming threat of a pandemic.

United States leadership of comprehensive and evidence-based actions will be critical to reducing the spread and impacts of the disease both here and abroad. The scope of challenges posed by outbreaks of a newly identified respiratory infection for which neither prevention nor proven treatment yet exist requires coordinated, robust responses across all of our government agencies and institutions, as well as strong coordination with partner countries and international responders. These challenges must be met with appropriate resources that include intensified investment in global and domestic health security measures, and in our public health infrastructure. We must strengthen our ability to monitor and contain infections, treat those who become infected, and ensure full access to all essential medical services. We must work rapidly toward developing a vaccine, treatments and diagnostic tools.

The members of the Infectious Diseases Society of America support frontline providers, scientists and public health professionals who work to save lives, contain the spread of disease and inform responses to this threat to health, stability and security and lives worldwide. We urge the president to address this crisis in ways that unify Americans in the face of the shared challenges ahead.

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