Former top White House COVID-19 adviser Deborah Birx said Sunday that COVID-19 “came out of the box ready to infect" when it was first detected in Wuhan, China, in 2019.
Lab Leak“It happens, labs aren’t perfect, people aren’t perfect, we make mistakes and there can be contamination,” Birx said, noting that individuals with COVID-19 can be asymptomatic. “Someone working in the lab with one of the strains could’ve caught it and not known they had it," she said.
The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) could have reduced deaths if officials told health leaders that the virus can spread asymptomatically, she said.
“China was implying that they were containing it, but asymptomatic spread cannot be contained without testing,” Birx told the publication. “I think the world lost several months of preparation because we were thinking there wasn’t that level of human-to-human spread when there clearly was."
“As of today, the U.S. Intelligence Community has ‘coalesced around two likely scenarios’ but has not reached a definitive conclusion on this question,” President Joe Biden said at the time. “Here is their current position: ‘while two elements in the IC leans toward the former scenario and one leans more toward the latter—each with low or moderate confidence—the majority of elements do not believe there is sufficient information to assess one to be more likely than the other.’”
“It’s not unusual for respiratory pathogens that are being worked on in a laboratory to infect a laboratory worker,” Redfield said. “Normally, when a pathogen goes from a zoonot to human,” he added, “it takes a while for it to figure out how to become more and more efficient in human to human transmission.”