The head of the CDC is expressing dismay over the influence wielded by radiologist and White House COVID-19 advisor Scott Atlas, MD, according to a report published Monday.
NBC News overheard Robert Redfield, MD, sharing his concerns about Atlas during a private phone call made on a commercial flight between Atlanta and Washington. The CDC director confirmed to the outlet that he was speaking about the controversial federal leader—a reported mask skeptic who favors a “herd immunity” approach to the pandemic.
“Everything he says is false," Redfield, an infectious disease expert, stated over the phone, according to a Sept. 28 NBC News report.
A Centers for Disease Control and Prevention spokesman, meanwhile, emphasized that the news outlet only heard one side of a private phone conversation covering several points related to the pandemic. Atlas disputed Redfield’s alleged assertions in a statement issued to NBC News.
“Everything I have said is directly from the data and the science. It echoes what is said by many of the top medical scientists in the world, including those at Stanford, Harvard and Oxford,” he wrote.
The neuroradiologist and Fox News contributor recently made the news after nearly 100 former colleagues at Stanford University took him to task for his views related to the novel virus. Atlas and his attorneys responded by threatening possible legal retaliation against the letter writers.
Fellow COVID-19 advisor Anthony Fauci, MD, echoed some of Redfield’s concerns in a recent interview with CNN.
Read more from NBC News below.