The Great American Recovery: Third Quarter GDP Blows Past Expectations

West Wing Reads
From The White House  – October 29, 2020
“After releasing his plan to reopen America safely in April, President Trump remarked that prior to the Coronavirus pandemic, the United States had ‘built the greatest economy anywhere in the world . . .  and we’re going to build it again,'” the White House Council of Economic Advisers writes.
 
“This morning’s release of U.S. GDP for the third quarter of 2020 from the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) affirms President Trump’s statement . . . GDP grew 7.4 percent (33.1 percent at an annual rate) in the third quarter, the largest single quarter of economic growth on record and roughly twice the prior record of 3.9 percent.”
 
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“However implemented, the public option, like its close cousin Medicare-for All, poses a grave threat to America’s beleaguered health care workers,” writes Seema Verma, administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. “In light of the pandemic, that’s the last thing health care workers need . . . America owes them a debt of gratitude–not a pay cut.” Read more in RealClearHealth.

“Under the Trump administration, our country’s air is the cleanest ever recorded, our water has never been safer to drink, and we lead the world in overall GHG-emissions reductions . . . When it comes to intelligent environmental regulation, instead of blaming the Trump administration for their problems, perhaps [California] should look to it for guidance,” EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler writes in National Review.

“Last week, President Trump announced his promise to Indian Country–a collaborative policy agenda titled ‘Putting America’s First Peoples First: Forgotten No More.’ The plan reflects the President’s commitment to partnering with Native American communities to build a brighter future, while at the same time honoring their past,” write Acting Domestic Policy Council Director Brooke Rollins and Assistant Interior Secretary of Indian Affairs Tara Sweeney in Indian Country Today.

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Thousands of Health Experts Sign Declaration Calling for End to Lockdown, Warn of ‘Irreparable Damage’

Resolute Reads
From The White House – October 09, 2020

Five Stories President Trump Doesn’t Want You to Miss

-The Daily Wire
“Thousands of medical and public health experts have signed on to a declaration calling for an end to lockdown policies in favor of a more targeted approach to combatting the coronavirus pandemic,” Tim Pearce writes. “As infectious disease epidemiologists and public health scientists we have grave concerns about the damaging physical and mental health impacts of the prevailing COVID-19 policies,” the declaration states.

Return Respect to Nomination Process
Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette
“We should not allow the toxic politics of recent Supreme Court nominations to turn this nomination into a partisan circus. Judge Barrett and our country deserve a fair and respectful hearing,” Arkansas Lt. Governor Tim Griffin writes. “In a less polarized time, a nominee as eminently qualified as Judge Barrett would receive a nearly unanimous vote for confirmation.”

Schools Aren’t Super-Spreaders
The Atlantic
Across the United States, “fear and bad press slowed down or canceled school reopenings,” Brown University economist Emily Oster writes. “It’s now October. We are starting to get an evidence-based picture of how school reopenings and remote learning are going . . . Schools do not, in fact, appear to be a major spreader of COVID-19.”

In Afghanistan, As We Enter Our 20th Year, It’s Time to Come Home
-Fox News
“As someone who volunteered for service, fought in Afghanistan, and watched good friends give their lives for the mission there, it’s difficult to accept that 19 years hasn’t been enough. As President Donald Trump signaled on Twitter on Wednesday American involvement in the Afghan conflict should end, our service members should come back to their families, and our country should move forward,” Nate Anderson writes.

National Association of Scholars Calls for Revoking the 1619 Project Pulitzer Prize
-The Federalist
“An impressive array of academics associated with the National Association of Scholars signed a letter to the Pulitzer Prize Board calling for it to revoke the prize it ceremoniously awarded to Nikole Hannah-Jones this year for her lead essay in The New York Times’ deeply troubled and historically challenged 1619 Project,” Glenn Stanton writes. “Hannah-Jones and the Times secretly deleted the most fundamental claim of her lead essay for the project: that slavery was the central reason for our nation’s founding.”

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Telehealth Plays Big Role in Coronavirus Cure

The White House – April 09, 2020
“As our country responds to the unprecedented coronavirus pandemic, we are working rapidly to change the way we practice medicine to keep people safe,” Surgeon General Jerome Adams and CMS Administrator Seema Verma write in the Orlando Sentinel.
 
“One critical innovation is the use of telehealth, which allows patients to use smartphones, laptops, and other widely available technologies to connect with your healthcare team . . . For the duration of the pandemic, Medicare beneficiaries may now stay at home and use a commonly available interactive form of technology like FaceTime or Skype to have a telehealth office visit.”
 
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“President Trump was right this week to sharply criticize the inexcusable conduct of the World Health Organization (WHO) regarding the novel coronavirus pandemic . . . The WHO bears responsibility for helping China spread the coronavirus far beyond China’s borders. What should have been merely a local outbreak that began in China became a worldwide pandemic as a result of the actions of Beijing and the WHO,” Gordon Chang writes for Fox News.

“In the midst of Holy Week, which is also supposed to be the point of peak coronavirus deaths, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was able to deliver some welcome news”: Over 50,000 U.S. citizens have been safely returned home from more than 90 countries. “This worldwide scale of our repatriation efforts is without parallel in our lifetime,” Secretary Pompeo said.

Read more from Fred Lucas in The Daily Signal.

“The first obligation of every president of the United States since the founding of our nation has always been to protect the American people from harm. President Trump invoked his powers under the Constitution and under laws to do this when he ordered illegal immigrants and asylum seekers to be immediately deported to combat the spread of the coronavirus,” Thomas Homan, former Acting Director of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, writes for 
Fox News.

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THIS MORNING OUR FRIENDS FROM COLOR WRITE…

NIH funds genetic counseling resource ahead of million-person sequencing effort

August 21, 2019

Genetic counseling and technological infrastructure for the All of Us Research Program to be provided by Color

The All of Us Research Program, part of the National Institutes of Health, has awarded $4.6 million in initial funding to Color, a health technology company in Burlingame, California, to establish the program’s nationwide genetic counseling resource. With the goal of speeding up health research breakthroughs, All of Us plans to sequence the genomes of 1 million participants from diverse communities across the United States. Through this funding, Color’s network of genetic counselors will help participants understand what the genomic testing results mean for their health and their families. 

genetic counseling resource team at Color with Color logo in background
Leading the All of Us Research Program’s genetic counseling resource at Color are Alicia Zhou, Ph.D., vice president of research and scientific affairs; Scott Topper, Ph.D., FACMG, vice president of clinical operations and laboratory director; and Lauren Ryan, M.S., LCGC, head of clinical counseling services. Photo courtesy of Color.

“Returning results in a responsible way is integral to what All of Us stands for,” said All of Us Director Eric Dishman. “Participants are our partners in research, who may want to receive their own health data, including genomics. The genetic counseling resource will help our participants interpret and act upon their health information.”

As one of the most ambitious research programs in history, the All of Us Research Program aims to create the largest and most diverse health research resource of its kind. Participants from all parts of the country share health information over time through surveys, electronic health records and more. Some participants also are invited to contribute blood and urine samples for analysis. Researchers will be able to use this data to learn more about how biology, behavior and environment influence health and disease, which may lead to discoveries on how to further individualize health care in the future.

This award is in addition to Color’s ongoing funding in collaboration with the Broad Institute and Harvard’s Laboratory of Molecular Medicine, Cambridge, Massachusetts, which together received one of the three All of Us genome center awards announced in September 2018. As centers prepare to begin genotyping and whole genome sequencing in coming months, participants will be able to decide whether to receive test results.

Over time, the program anticipates providing several kinds of information to participants, including: information on ancestry and traits, drug-gene interactions (pharmacogenomics) and genetic findings connected with high risk of certain diseases. Genomic results from All of Us, although produced at a high quality in specially certified labs, should be confirmed by a health care provider before a participant makes any changes to their care. The pharmacogenomic information may help participants work with their health care teams more effectively to make choices about certain prescription drugs. Genetic findings tied to 59 genes associated with risk of specific diseases, like breast cancer or heart disease, for which there are established medical guidelines for treatment or prevention will also be returned to participants. To ensure that the program uses the most current knowledge in the fast-moving field of clinical genetics, All of Us is following guidance from professional organizations such as the American College of Medical Genetics and Genomics and the Clinical Pharmacogenetics Implementation Consortium.

As health-related information is made available, all participants will have access to genetic counseling services from Color. A small percentage of people will have DNA results, such as a variation in the breast cancer gene BRCA1, that may be important for treatment or screening. This information can also be valuable to their immediate family members who may share the same genetic variant. For All of Us, that could amount to tens of thousands of participants out of its eventual 1 million. Color will deliver the results to these participants in genetic counseling sessions, highlighting any important findings they may want to discuss with a health care provider. 

“A genetic counseling award of this size is a first for NIH,” said Brad Ozenberger, Ph.D., genomics program director of the All of Us Research Program. “We look forward to working with Color and our entire consortium to discover the ethical and effective ways to deliver genetic counseling at this very large scale across diverse communities.”

Color will offer educational materials and telecounseling in multiple languages, as well as access to in-house licensed clinical pharmacists who can help participants have more effective conversations with their health care providers. Genetic counselors will also be able to help connect participants to health care providers who can address their particular health risks.

To help guide its genetic counseling services, Color’s steering committee is led by Amy Sturm, M.S., CGC, LGC, president of the National Society of Genetic Counselors. It also includes leadership of the American Board of Genetic Counseling. The steering committee will help ensure that Color delivers top-quality genetic counseling and serves as a platform for training future generations of genetic counselors.

Color has built software and digital tools that remove traditional barriers to genetic counseling and clinical genetic testing. It has conducted more than 15,000 genetic counseling sessions to help people across the country understand their DNA information.

“The All of Us Research Program is a prime example of using technology to support geographically distributed and diverse research volunteers,” said Othman Laraki, chief executive officer of Color. “This ambitious program relies on a deeply unified process, which includes engaging participants, gathering health information, sequencing genomes, interpreting data and securely and responsibly returning results. We are honored to provide the technological backbone—software and services including our genetic counseling program—to extend the reach of this groundbreaking effort across all 50 states and showcase a scalable model for the integration of genomics into public health.” 

The All of Us Research Program Genetic Counseling Resource is supported by NIH award number OT2 OD028251.

All of Us Research Program Establishes Genetic Counseling Resource

Contact:
AllofUsPress@mail.nih.gov
(301) 827-6877

About the All of Us Research Program: The mission of the All of Us Research Program is to accelerate health research and medical breakthroughs, enabling individualized prevention, treatment, and care for all of us. The program will partner with one million or more people across the United States to build the most diverse biomedical data resource of its kind, to help researchers gain better insights into the biological, environmental, and behavioral factors that influence health. For more information, visit www.JoinAllofUs.org and www.allofus.nih.gov.

About the National Institutes of Health (NIH): NIH, the nation’s medical research agency, includes 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. NIH is the primary federal agency conducting and supporting basic, clinical, and translational medical research, and is investigating the causes, treatments, and cures for both common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and its programs, visit www.nih.gov.

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