Today, Senator Richard Burr (R-NC), Ranking Member of the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions, sent a letter to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Director Rochelle Walensky pressing the agency to clarify the science behind its decision to terminate the Title 42 order after apparent inconsistencies between the rationale used to support the decision and the current state of the ongoing response.
“I believe that I understand the Administration’s progressive politics driving the decision, but I do not believe that there is adequate science that would allow such a decision to be made,” wrote Senator Burr.
“In the announcement, CDC noted, ‘97.1% of the U.S. population lives in a county identified as having ‘low’ COVID-19 Community Level,’” Senator Burr continued. “However, as of today, CDC assesses the risk of COVID-19 transmission in Mexico to be Level 3, or high, and all other countries in Central America are at or above Level 3, except for those that CDC recommends U.S. travelers entirely avoid due to lack of information about COVID-19 transmission levels.
“CDC also cites the importance of vaccination in preventing severe disease during the Omicron surge, which CDC uses as evidence to support the decision to terminate the previous order. However, the durability of immunity among the U.S. population over the coming months remains to be seen, as much of the population continues to be ineligible for a fourth dose. This could, in turn, lead to increases in severe disease during future waves and will be exacerbated by the introduction of additional cases and likely undetected variants through illegal border crossings.
“Access to treatments is similarly cited as a mitigating factor. However, it is my understanding that the administration is unable to procure sufficient doses of these products for American citizens without additional funding from Congress.”
This letter follows a statement released by Senator Burr last week highlighting the Administration’s contradictory messaging on COVID-19 after the Administration announced that it would discontinue the Title 42 order on April 1, 2022.
To read the full letter, click here.