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HHS directs CDC to put Covid-related hospital data back on its website

The US Department of Health and Human Services changed course on Thursday on a controversial decision about hospital data, directing the US Centers for Disea...

Posted: Jul 16, 2020 2:54 PM

The US Department of Health and Human Services changed course on Thursday on a controversial decision about hospital data, directing the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to re-post public hospital information onto its website.

HHS had told hospitals to stop reporting the data on coronavirus hospitalizations to CDC, saying the agency was posting the information too slowly. HHS, the parent department of CDC, said it would manage the information instead.

CDC took down some of the data from its website Wednesday evening.

On Thursday morning, HHS said it was directing the agency to put the data back up.

"HHS is committed to being transparent with the American public about the information it is collecting on the coronavirus. Therefore, HHS has directed CDC to re-establish the coronavirus dashboards it withdrew from the public on Wednesday," Assistant Secretary of Public Affairs Michael Caputo said Thursday.

"Going forward, HHS and CDC will deliver more powerful insights on the coronavirus, powered by HHS Protect," said Caputo. HHS Protect is the department's coronavirus information center.

The White House has been asking hospitals to provide the coronavirus data on a daily basis since March.

The dashboard modules were restored Thursday. CDC has also added language to its website saying the data would not be updated past July 14.

The information was on the National Healthcare Safety Network Covid-19 module page and the CDC's Covid-19 data tracker.

Public health experts had objected vociferously to HHS's decision to bypass CDC.

"Given how political the response has been to date, it's a step backwards to have these data going directly to HHS in Washington," former CDC interim director Dr. Richard Besser told CNN.

"The disruption that they're going to create, and confusion simply telling people to do something different in the middle of a disaster -- that does not work," American Public Health Association Executive Director Dr. Georges Benjamin told CNN.

"It's like telling a soldier in the middle of a battle 'we want you to fight differently than we trained you.' Doesn't work."

The Infectious Diseases Society of America called the decision "troubling."

White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany later denied that HHS had ever planned to remove data from the CDC website.

"No one is taking access or data away from the CDC and that data is routinely published so that the American people are fully informed," she told reporters Thursday. "The CDC database is the public data that's been out there. It will continue to be public. It should be public."

Oregon Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 139355

Reported Deaths: 1904
CountyCasesDeaths
Multnomah29403466
Washington19370183
Marion16840250
Clackamas12186142
Lane8850113
Jackson723497
Umatilla702874
Deschutes528341
Yamhill333851
Linn322950
Malheur321755
Polk259940
Klamath256848
Josephine186836
Benton184614
Douglas180547
Jefferson173925
Union115817
Wasco112723
Columbia108218
Lincoln104417
Coos102116
Hood River99423
Morrow96810
Clatsop7185
Crook66914
Baker5835
Tillamook3732
Curry3275
Lake2605
Grant2171
Harney1906
Wallowa1003
Gilliam531
Sherman480
Wheeler201
Unassigned00

California Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 3235045

Reported Deaths: 38268
CountyCasesDeaths
Los Angeles108548815614
San Bernardino2685421719
Riverside2668492970
Orange2391752768
San Diego2300662421
Santa Clara991741278
Kern91119591
Fresno863361084
Sacramento846531194
Alameda71298906
Ventura67066546
San Joaquin60545844
Contra Costa55593492
Stanislaus49500803
Tulare43574542
Monterey38434261
San Mateo34510356
San Francisco30734293
Santa Barbara27149267
Solano27141118
Imperial25745510
Merced25743332
Sonoma25160251
Kings20223161
Placer18034188
San Luis Obispo17151161
Madera14068175
Santa Cruz13088136
Marin12067166
Yolo11276146
Shasta10144132
Butte9865136
El Dorado824566
Sutter812984
Napa807050
Lassen530916
San Benito523851
Yuba522730
Tehama456446
Tuolumne351241
Nevada339473
Mendocino332236
Amador307433
Lake272932
Humboldt265227
Glenn202822
Colusa19079
Calaveras171323
Siskiyou150413
Mono11454
Inyo105329
Del Norte8783
Plumas6185
Modoc3924
Mariposa3575
Trinity3065
Sierra950
Alpine740
Unassigned00
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