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Jared Kushner’s coronavirus team may be getting tips from Facebook

Kushner asked Karlie Kloss's father, who turned to a Facebook group of doctors


Libby Cohen


Posted on Mar 13, 2020   Updated on Mar 13, 2020, 11:42 am CDT

Jared Kushner, one of President Donald Trump’s senior advisers and son-in-law, is crowdsourcing help from doctors on Facebook for coronavirus (COVID-19) research.

The coronavirus has been spread in the United States, with over 1,600 cases as of Friday morning. And it is Kushner’s job to research ways to mitigate it.

As the Trumps tend to do, he turned to someone within his family. Sister-in-law Karlie Kloss’s father posted in a Facebook group of over 20,000 doctors looking for advice to give to a person in the White House on Wednesday.

“If you were in charge of Federal response to the Pandemic what would your recommendation be,’ Kloss posted according to screenshots from the Spectator. “Please only serious responses. I have direct channel to person now in charge at White House and have been asked for recommendations. I have already expressed concern for need for ventilators and more PPE (personal protective equipment) for frontline and test kits.”

The Spectator USA

Some doctors responded with genuine advice for the White House confidant. Others were skeptical about his claims according to the Spectator.

In response, Kloss followed up his first post with a clarification about his family and motives.

“For transparency I will provide some background about my unique circumstance. I have not shared this in a professional forum before. Our daughter Karlie Kloss (one of the top models in the world, 45 Vogue covers and counting; proud dad commentary) is marred to Mr Joshua Kushner. His brother is Mr Jared Kushner son in law to the President and who is now directly involved with the response to this. I have been over the past two weeks expressing our concern through Josh about lack of PPE availability, the frustration of not being able to test and especially to ensure enough ventilators. Tonight I was asked by Jared through my son in-law for my recommendations, that’s when I turned to you guys my fellow BAFERD’s for help,” Kloss posted.

In Body Image

BAFERD is an acroynm for ‘Bad Ass Fucking Emergency Room Doctor,’ the group’s name.

But, Facebook groups have recently proven to be a breeding ground for misinformation regarding the virus. The Daily Dot reported that coronavirus groups are rapidly growing.

They vary in content from memes to conspiracy theories and disinformation.

“We’re focused on connecting people with accurate information and removing harmful misinformation related to COVID-19, including in Groups. Anyone who searches for COVID-19 related groups is directed to credible information from health organizations,” Facebook said in a statement.

The copious amount of falsehoods on Facebook does not stop the masses, including Kloss and Kushner, from getting their information about coronavirus from the social media site.

It’s not known what the vetting procedure is to join the group Kloss discussed this in, but presumably many members are doctors.

Kloss’s posts sparked hundreds of comments. From those, Kloss compiled 12 recommendations for the White House.

“Thoughts so far
1) Nationalize as in war time production of PPE’s, testing kits and ventilators
2) Suspend EMTALA
3) Activate FEMA and DMAT teams
4)Pop up Field Hospitals with ICU capability Israel seems to have expertise
5)Decentralized testing away from hospital or if on hospital away from ED (emergency department)
6)Drive through testing capability and I would add pulse ox capability
7)Draconian travel restrictions
8)Canceling all mass gatherings
9)Massive marketing of PSA explaining what patients to do especially not going to ED if not in respiratory distress (Need to refine this message )
10)National Telemedicine for screening
11)Locking down Nursing Homes require all care givers in full gear and frequent testing
12)Use state ACEP (American College of Emergency Physicians) for some sort of incident command structure
13)Use emergency funding to compensate quarantined

I’ve got to turn this in now,” Kloss posted.

the Spectator

EMTALA stands for the Emergency Medical Treatment and Labor Act and DMAT stands for Disaster Medical Assistance Team.

“Jared is reading now,” Kloss posted hours later.

the Spectator

Hopefully, Kushner was able to take away some helpful advice because Politico reports that Kloss’s posts were deleted from the Facebook group Friday morning.

Friday morning, House Democrats and the Trump Administration said they were close to a deal on a coronavirus relief bill according to the Washington Post. Trump announced a press conference for mid-afternoon Friday.


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*First Published: Mar 13, 2020, 11:35 am CDT