President Trump is reportedly furious after a State Department doctor ignored the President’s orders and allowed Americans, sick with the coronavirus, to return to the US from Japan. Dr. William Walters, Executive Director and Managing Director for Operational Medicine for the Bureau of Medical Services at the U.S. Department of State, made the decision to bring the patients back to the US.
Dr. Walters rationalized his decision to override the President and the CDC and allow individuals sick with the coronavirus to return to the US:
‘It’s important to remember this was an emerging and unusual circumstance,’ said Ian Brownlee, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary, Bureau of Consular Affairs.
‘We had 328 people on buses, a plan to execute and we received lab results on people who were otherwise asymptomatic, un-ill people on a bus on the way to the airport.
‘The people on the ground did exactly the right thing…in bringing them home.’
People who had tested positive were put into isolation units on board the two cargo planes, which then flew to Joint Base San Antonio – Lackland in Texas and Travis Air Base in California.
Although officials reassured the press that the sick passengers were thoroughly contained and every precaution had been taken to ensure the safety of the healthy people onboard, reports later emerged that people on the flights had no idea they were sharing yet another even more confined space with infected individuals.
When the planes landed at their respective destinations late Sunday night, six ‘high risk’ passengers from Lackland and seven from Travis were ushered onto an additional flight to Omaha Eppley Airfield in Nebraska.
This decision was very upsetting to many Americans.
UPDATE– This was post updated to reflect the correct official’s name from the State Department call.