The report describes different vital missteps, a few of which had already been made public. It cites final 12 months’s report from H.H.S. attorneys describing a scene on the base during which an A.C.F. official instructed well being division staff to take away private protecting gear at a gathering with evacuees, lest there be “unhealthy optics.”
Federal well being companies additionally struggled to cease these on the bottom from leaving within the absence of a federal quarantine order, which lasted a number of days, the report stated. One particular person with the “potential to unfold” Covid-19 tried to go away the bottom.
The G.A.O. additionally wrote that federal well being officers disagreed on which company was answerable for an infection management on the bottom, whereas using private protecting gear was uneven amongst poorly-trained federal staff there. The dispute led to an virtually comical bureaucratic tangle.
At first, A.C.F. and A.S.P.R. officers seen the C.D.C. because the physique with extra experience and authority, together with underneath a piece of the federal authorities’s steerage on repatriation procedures associated to Ebola. However C.D.C. officers instructed their colleagues that part was not relevant to different ailments, and that the company was not answerable for managing the staff of different companies. Nonetheless, the C.D.C. supplied coaching after it was requested.
“Based on H.H.S., C.D.C. personnel on the bottom offered inconsistent and casual an infection prevention and management steerage for the primary 3 days of the mission due to an absence of clear roles,” the report stated.
The G.A.O. famous that H.H.S. didn’t function repatriation in its planning workouts for a pandemic, and subsequently was not outfitted to coordinate such an effort. “Till H.H.S. conducts such workouts, it will likely be unable to check its repatriation plans throughout a pandemic and determine areas for enchancment,” the workplace wrote.
H.H.S. agreed with its suggestions, the G.A.O. stated.