Speed Reads

changing the game

CDC brings in high-profile outsiders to launch new center aimed at improving disease outbreak forecasting

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is trying to change its game and become a bit more proactive.

The agency has faced some criticism throughout the COVID-19 pandemic for struggling to model coronavirus outbreaks and sharing key data too slowly, making it difficult for decision-makers to react in real time and come up with clear response policies. But on Tuesday, the CDC announced a new offshoot, led by high-profile outside experts who have come to the forefront during the pandemic such as Drs. Marc Lipsitch and Caitlyn Rivers, that's aimed at improving disease outbreak forecasting. 

The CDC's Center for Forecasting and Outbreak Analytics will focus on three key functions, the agency said: predicting the course of outbreaks, data sharing and integration, and translating and communicating the forecasts for policy-makers. 

The announcement received widespread praise, including from some of the folks, like former Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Scott Gottlieb, who have expressed disappointment with the CDC's approach in the past.