Take as Directed is a series of the CSIS Global Health Policy Center. It highlights important news, events, issues, and perspectives in global health policy, particularly in infectious disease, health security, and maternal, newborn, and child health. This series brings you commentary and perspectives from some of the leading voices in global health.
Delivering Vaccines to Americans: Cause for Alarm?
Jennifer Kates and Josh Michaud, Kaiser Family Foundation, joined us to discuss their new analysis, ‘Distributing a Covid-19 Vaccine Across the United States – A Look at Key Issues.’ Getting vaccines to Americans is an unprecedented, gargantuan, complex enterprise. Just how ready are we? Financing thus far is a meager $200 million, while an estimated $6-10 billion will be required. Local public health infrastructure is rickety, insurance gaps are many, and building trust and engagement, especially with Black, Latinx and Native American populations remain essential challenges. Some states have identified early phase, prioritized recipients with some precision. Others lag behind. How to manage this enterprise amid deep partisan divisions, the winter surge, our national electoral process? How to judge the performance thus far of Operation Warp Speed? Give a listen!
Jennifer Kates and Josh Michaud are with the Kaiser Family Foundation in Washington D.C.. Jennifer is the Senior Vice President and Director of Global Health and HIV Policy, Josh the Associate Director of Global Health Policy.
Coronavirus Crisis Update: America- Two Different Countries Responding to a Single Pandemic
Mollyann Brodie, America’s premier health survey researcher, explores the widening bifurcation of America along partisan and ideological grounds, with “wildly different conceptions, wildly different sources of information, sealed off from alternatives.” This advancing politicization, aggravated by the current electoral cycle, is now dominating the response to Covid-19. She also walks us through the “perfect storm” experienced by the Black community in America, its compromised health and financial well-being, distrust and alienation from the health system, as revealed in a moving and powerful recent Kaiser Family Foundation/The Undefeated study.
Mollyann Brodie is the Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, Kaiser Family Foundation, where she also is Executive Director of the Public Opinion and Survey Research Program
Coronavirus Crisis Update: Tom Bollyky – The Next "Once in a Century" Pandemic Lies Ahead
In this episode, we are joined by Tom Bollyky of the Council on Foreign Relations. Co-director of a newly released bipartisan CFR Independent Task Force on pandemic preparedness and the response to Covid-19, Tom walks us through the Task Force’s findings, including how China’s lack of transparency in the early days of the pandemic fueled the spread of the virus, subsequently compounded by failures at the federal and others levels of the US government. Even in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic, we need to prepare for the next ‘once in a century’ pandemic. Two Task Force recommendations stand out: its call for the creation of an international surveillance network coupled with a Health Security Coordination Committee, a new international mechanism to navigate geopolitical pressures and coordinate quick action.
Tom Bollyky is Senior Fellow for Global Health, Economics, and Development and Director of the Global Health Program at the Council on Foreign Relations. The report is the ‘Independent Task Force Report No. 78: Improving Pandemic Preparedness: Lessons From COVID-19’.
Coronavirus Crisis Update: U Wis-Madison Chancellor Blank: "No Matter What You Do, People Will Be Angry With You.”
As UW-Madison opened in early September, it faced a sudden explosion of Covid-19 cases. Hear from Chancellor Rebecca Blank why this happened, the steps taken to re-stabilize the university amid multiple, deep political divisions across Wisconsin, a very public showdown between the university and county authorities, and a runaway Covid-19 outbreak in the state. Hear also about the impending return of football (“Every game is an away game!”), preparations for the winter and spring, the future of education at UW and beyond. “We have to respond” to achieve greater racial diversity among faculty and students as the movement for racial justice has swept the nation.
Rebecca Blank has served as Chancellor of the University of Wisconsin-Madison since 2013. Prior to that, she served as Acting and Deputy Secretary of Commerce in the Obama administration, Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution, Dean of the Ford School of Policy at the University of Michigan, and as a member of the Council of Economic Advisors to President Clinton.
Coronavirus Crisis Update: Rep. Tom Cole (R-OK) on America’s Choices
We crossed much sensitive and difficult ground in our extended conversation with Rep. Tom Cole (R-OK). President Trump’s bout with Covid-19, the proliferation of White House cases, the claim that the virus is not dangerous: how to make sense of all of this this, and the implications? Why have negotiations over the next Covid-19 emergency spending bill broken down? And how bad are the consequences? How to protect CDC and FDA? Do we need a national conversation on the value and merits of vaccines, and the need to rebuild popular trust and confidence? Should Congress support Gavi to bring vaccines to low and middle income countries? Give a listen.
Rep. Tom Cole (R-OK) is leading force in Congress advocating for strong bipartisan US leadership in health security, at home and abroad. He is the former Chair and now Ranking Member of the Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, HHS, Education and Related Agencies. He is Ranking member of the Rules Committee and Deputy Whip of the Republican Conference. He is also a member of the CSIS Commission on Strengthening America’s Health Security.
Coronavirus Crisis Update: The Bumpy Ride of U.S. Colleges and Universities
Our longstanding friend and ally Judyth Twigg joins us to survey the rather bumpy ride that America’s colleges and universities are experiencing as they navigate the pandemic. Are these institutions the new super-spreaders? What form of leadership is showing the best results? Are colleges and universities now the center for innovation in testing? How well exactly do we learn when separated into remote settings? What about mental health?
Professor Judyth Twigg is Professor of Political Science at Virginia Commonwealth University and CSIS non-resident Senior Fellow with the Global Health Policy Center and Europe Program.