Former Food and Drug commissioner Scott Gottlieb said Sunday that the World Health Organization (WHO) should commission a report on what the Chinese government failed to communicate once the coronavirus pandemic concludes.
“Had [China] been more truthful with the world, which would have enabled them to be more truthful with themselves, they might have actually been able to contain this entirely,” Gottlieb said on CBS’ “Face the Nation,” adding that Chinese officials were making claims in January that there was no human-to-human transmission of the virus, which the WHO was in turn validating and “enabling the obfuscation.”
“I think going forward the WHO needs to commit to an after-action [report] that specifically examines what China did or didn't tell the world and how that stymied the global response to this,” Gottlieb said. “I also think they need to embrace Taiwan’s role in the global health community and allow them to attend the World Health Assembly.”
China does not consider Taiwan an independent nation, and has pressured the WHO to sideline it despite Taiwan having one of the world’s least deadly outbreaks of the virus, with only five confirmed deaths as of Thursday.
WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the first Ethiopian head of the organization, has also accused Taiwanese officials of enabling a racist smear campaign against him, which Taiwan has denied.
However, Gottlieb disagreed with suggestions by President TrumpDonald TrumpTexas announces election audit in four counties after Trump demand Schumer sets Monday showdown on debt ceiling-government funding bill Pennsylvania AG sues to block GOP subpoenas in election probe MORE that he may cut off aid to WHO, telling CBS’ Margaret Brennan: “I don’t think this is a time to defund the WHO, given the fact that I think this is going to become epidemic in the southern hemisphere and parts of the world that don’t have resources,” but added that Trump had raised “a lot of valid concerns.”