CDC tells employees not to talk to the press: report

CDC tells employees not to talk to the press: report
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The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is warning employees not to talk to reporters unless they are cleared by the communications office, according to an internal email obtained by Axios.

"Effective immediately and until further notice, any and all correspondence with any member of the news media, regardless of the nature of the inquiry, must be cleared through CDC's Atlanta Communications Office," public affairs officer Jeffrey Lancashire wrote. "This correspondence includes everything from formal interview requests to the most basic of data requests."

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Employees were instructed not to talk to reporters “even for a simple data-related question," Axios reports.

In July, President Trump appointed a new director for the CDC, Dr. Brenda Fitzgerald, who was previously commissioner of Georgia’s Department of Public Health.

In a statement, the agency said it uses "multiple channels to communicate its science information to the public" and that they updated a procedure within an existing policy.

The agency said that CDC public affairs officers "continue to speak directly to news reporters to facilitate understanding of their requests and deadlines," and to share information and that they "will continue to refine procedures to ensure coordinated, accurate and timely release of information to the public through the media."

Update: This story has been updated with CDC comments.