Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Director Dr. Robert Redfield reportedly criticized Friday new coronavirus task force member Dr. Scott Atlas, saying, “Everything he says is false.”
Redfield allegedly made the remark during a phone conversation that was overheard by a network reporter, according to NBC News.
Redfield is reportedly at loggerheads with Atlas over the Hoover Institution senior fellow’s questioning of the need to wear face masks during the coronavirus pandemic and the susceptibility of young people to the disease. (RELATED: ‘Staying In Place Is Actually Harmful’: Stanford’s Scott Atlas Makes The Case For Herd Immunity)
The CDC director confirmed to NBC that he was in fact speaking about Atlas, a neuroradiologist who has been a frequent guest on Fox News, where he has suggested that governments have overreacted to the pandemic. Atlas joined the coronavirus task force in August.
Atlas has publicly challenged Redfield’s statements about the coronavirus.
During last Wednesday’s task force briefing, NBC reporter Peter Alexander asked Atlas to respond to a comment from Redfield that “more than 90% of the population remains susceptible” to the virus.
“I think that Dr. Redfield misstated something there,” Atlas responded.
Redfield testified to a Senate Appropriations subcommittee this month that he believes a face mask offers him better protection from COVID-19 than any potential vaccine while saying the Trump administration is being overly optimistic about the availability of any vaccine.
“If every one of us did it, this pandemic would be over in eight to 12 weeks,” Redfield claimed, according to NBC, with regard to the wearing of face masks. He also repeated his contention that the coronavirus is far from finished. (RELATED: ‘I Don’t Think Anyone Believes That’: Scott Atlas Reacts To CDC Director’s Comments On Masks Being Better Than A Vaccine)
Atlas has been a staunch critic of how lockdowns having been enforced throughout the coronavirus pandemic.
In an e-mailed statement, a CDC spokesman told NBC news that the network “is reporting one side of a private phone conversation by CDC Director Dr. Robert Redfield that was overheard on a plane from Atlanta Hartsfield airport. Dr. Redfield was having a private discussion regarding a number of points he has made publicly about Covid-19.”
Redfield has warned that a second wave of COVID-19 this fall could be catastrophic for the health of Americans.