Donald Trump is receiving harsh criticism from medical professionals across the United States who are not pleased with the way he has handled the COVID-19 outbreak.
Stat News interviewed a dozen different doctors from across the country this week to get their take on how the president has handled the pandemic.
Eric Topol, a cardiologist and director of the Scripps Research Translational Institute in San Diego, did not hold back when calling out the Trump administration’s response to the crisis.
“The American public doesn’t know that a large portion of this catastrophe was preventable, if not for the sinful incompetence of our leaders,” he said. “It didn’t have to be like this.”
Barry Schapiro, an orthopedic surgeon practicing in Palm Beach, similarly told Stat News that he was “livid” with the government’s performance so far.
“This is all being mismanaged, and we’re being put at risk unnecessarily,” he said. “We had ample time to prepare. It didn’t have to be like this.”
Terry Adirim, a trained pediatric emergency physician who previously worked as a senior Department of Defense and Homeland Security official, blamed Trump for not taking the pandemic seriously and downplaying the dangers when he was initially warned about it.
“There’s still no real leadership,” he said. “On a national scale, who on earth is in charge of handling this pandemic? I’m flummoxed.”
Many doctors who spoke with the publication preferred to remain anonymous because they are being instructed not to publicly criticize the federal response.
“I alternate between anxiety attacks and rage over this … everything is shrouded in secrecy,” said one Los Angeles-based primary care physician. “It’s an American shame.”
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