Adm. Brett Giroir, HHS assistant secretary (Graeme Jennings/Pool via AP)

For­mer Covid test­ing czar dish­es on the pol­i­tics that in­ter­rupt­ed the ear­ly pan­dem­ic re­sponse

In the ear­ly, tur­bu­lent days of the Trump White House’s re­sponse to the pan­dem­ic, there were few peo­ple who cir­cled in the same or­bit as all of the top health lead­ers, and Ad­mi­ral Brett Giroir, the first coro­n­avirus test­ing czar from March 2020, who al­so served briefly as act­ing FDA com­mis­sion­er in Nov. 2019, was one of them.

In his new mem­oir, to be pub­lished next Tues­day by Texas A&M, Giroir ex­plains what went down be­hind some of the most po­lit­i­cal­ly-charged scenes, with two po­lit­i­cal ap­pointees — the econ­o­mist Pe­ter Navar­ro, who ral­lied for the use of hy­drox­y­chloro­quine even af­ter the ran­dom­ized con­trolled tri­als failed, and Scott At­las, Trump’s on­ly po­lit­i­cal ap­pointee to be added to the fed­er­al coro­n­avirus task force — both of whom fea­tured promi­nent­ly in some of the more con­tentious meet­ings.

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