Leadership at the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, beset by a Trump White House that was harshly critical of the agency coronavirus response, are anticipating the Biden transition team and the change a new administration will bring, senior health officials tell CNN.
“This is what we’ve been waiting for is for them to send their landing team here and set up shop,” a senior CDC official said.
The senior official added that while it is standard operating procedure during any transition of administration, the expectation is there will be some “rebuilding of the agency” under President-elect Joe Biden.
When asked if there was more enthusiasm among senior leaders at the CDC on Tuesday morning, the official said emphatically, “Yes!”
A federal health official official declined to say if they had spoken directly to anyone from the Biden transition team as of Tuesday morning, but did say having been through numerous administration transitions, “the CDC benefits when that happens quickly.”
“From experience, the faster you get through it the better,” the official said of the transition.
Speaking to the mood in the agency among senior leaders, the official said there did seem to be more enthusiasm that the CDC may be able to restart regular briefings, which were ordered to be stopped by the Trump Administration at the beginning of the pandemic.
“Man oh man, I hope so,” the official said about the CDC returning to a more visible role.
The federal health official with knowledge of operations said, that the CDC remains leading the public health response through its Emergency Operations Center.
The official noted that the CDC has remained in daily contact with states regarding vaccine distribution and rollout. Also, as the nation grapples with record breaking infection and hospitalizations, schools continue to be front and center in the response, the official said.