Former FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb criticized the CDC for its 'lack of rigor' in providing guidelines during the early days of COVID, pointing to the six-feet-apart social distancing rule to stop the spread as an 'arbitrary' approach proposed by a Trump appointee.
'The six feet rule was arbitrary in and of itself, nobody knows where it came from,' said Gottlieb in an interview with Margaret Brennan in CBS's segment Face The Nation.
'But if the administration had focused in on that, they might have been able to effect a policy that would have actually achieved their outcome. But that policy making process didn’t exist, and the six feet is a perfect example of sort of the lack of rigor around how CDC made recommendations.'
Gottlieb continued: 'The initial recommendation that the CDC brought to the White House and I talk about this was 10 feet, and a political appointee in the White House said we can't recommend 10 feet.
Gottlieb, a frequent critic of Trump's handling of the pandemic, did not disclose the name of the aide who allegedly proposed the six-feet rule.
'Nobody can measure 10 feet. It's inoperable. Society will shut down. So the compromise was around six feet,' Gottlieb said.
Former FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb said that the six-feet-apart social distancing rule branded as one of the main measures to stop COVID-19 spread was 'arbitrary,'
'The six feet rule was arbitrary in and of itself, nobody knows where it came from,' said Gottlieb in an interview with Margaret Brennan in CBC's segment Face The Nation
In the interview, Gottlieb said that the guideline was changed to three feet this spring because of added pressure from the Biden administration to open back schools across the country, which was only going to be possible if the six-feet measure was reduced.
In March, the CDC recommended that all students should remain at least three feet apart in classrooms.
The CDC cited the reason behind the impromptu change was a study that proved three-feet social distancing between two masked individuals reduced the chances of COVID-19 infections by 70 percent.
However, Gottlieb contended that the study had been done in the fall of 2020, and the CDC waited until the spring to change the guideline.
'Which begs the question if they had that study result in the fall, why didn't they change the advice in the fall? Why did they wait until the spring?
'This is how the whole thing feels arbitrary and not science-based. So we talk about a very careful, science-based process and these