The article “CDC quietly revises coronavirus guidance to downplay the importance of testing asymptomatic people” by Will Feur, published on CNBC on 26 August 2020, addresses the revised Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines to curb transmission of SARS-COV-2. According to the article, the basis or legitimacy of the guideline is doubtful and is susceptible to external influence. The decision to revise coronavirus guidelines is considered unsuitable in the traditional governance model.
The CDC guideline addressed by the article pertains to the necessity of tests and implications. Per the CDC guideline, people do not need testing, unless they are vulnerable or upon the recommendation of a health practitioner. Moreover, a negative test is neither a clear sign of infection from close contact with the infected individual nor the possibility of not contracting the virus later (Feuer, 2020). Therefore, testing asymptomatic people has no significance in the prevention of SARS-COV-2 spread; thus, only asymptomatic people from vulnerable populations should be prioritized and tested upon exposure to infected individuals. Furthermore, the number of asymptomatic tests should reduce in areas with a limited number of new cases except for vulnerable populations (Feuer, 2020). This measure is meant to identify the infections early enough to reduce fatalities on vulnerable people.
Relevance to Governance Model
Governance refers to the process, traditions, and structures that determine decision-making and how power is exercised. CDC uses the traditional governance model, whereby the board or committee has the responsibility for oversight and planning. It delegates its decisions to the executive director. The primary features of this model include; accountability on its actions, transparency in the decision-making process, the effectiveness of the decisions made, and inclusiveness of the interest of all parties, among others. For its success, the application of a governance model should conform to all stipulated principles.
In the article, not all members of the committee are included in the decision-making process. Dr. Antony Fausi, a member of the White House coronavirus task force, denied being part of an alleged discussion that agreed on the new testing recommendations (Feuer, 2020). On the facet of accountability, Dr. Tom Frieden, the former CDC director, cited that the change is unjustifiable, and most likely, imposed on the agency’s website (Feuer, 2020). The effectiveness of the new guidelines would fail upon implementation because it has been criticized by epidemiologists, such as Dr. Michel Mina, who noted that it is critical to test asymptomatic individuals to provide guidelines for a targeted response. Notably, Dr. Leana Wen said that people without symptoms account for 50% in spreading the virus. Therefore, there is a need for more testing (Feuer, 2020). There lacks of transparency in decision-making since the basis and legitimacy of the guidelines are not clear. According to the article, these guidelines were quietly revised and did not follow the required process (Feuer, 2020). The revision of the guidelines did not conform to the rule of law as New York Governor Andrew Cuomo appraised the new CDC guideline stating that it was political propaganda in support of the re-election of President Donald Trump (Feuer, 2020). These opinions, emanating from the public domain, according to the article, challenge the effective implementation of the traditional governance model in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
In the traditional governance model, the interest of all the concerned parties should be included. Decision-makers should also be held accountable for their decisions. The effectiveness of the decisions should be considered. There should be transparency in the process. Above all, the decision-making process should follow the rule of law.
Feuer, W. (2020, August 26). CDC quietly revises coronavirus guidance to downplay the importance of testing asymptomatic people. Retrieved from https://www.cnbc.com/2020/08/26/cdc-quietly-revises-coronavirus-guidance-to-downplay-importance-of-testing-for-asymptomatic-people.html