The Obama administration also held pandemic briefings and 'tabletop exercises' for the incoming Trump administration.
In 2017, Obama officials briefed Trump's team on dealing with a pandemic like the coronavirus. One Cabinet member reportedly fell asleep, and others didn't want to be there.
- In the days before Donald Trump's inauguration, outgoing Obama administration officials trained his incoming administration on how to deal with a pandemic.
- Politico said it obtained documents from the meeting and spoke with more than a dozen people who attended the training, which was described as "weird" at best.
- One member of Trump's Cabinet, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, reportedly dozed off, and others questioned why they had to be there.
When President Donald Trump visited the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention earlier this month as coronavirus cases accelerated in the US, he said that "you can never really think" that something like this might happen.
But it turns out the Obama administration did think this was something Trump could face in office and took steps to brief his appointees on how to respond to an outbreak before he took over in 2017.
Politico reported on Monday that it obtained documents from that legally mandated training and spoke with more than a dozen attendees, from the Obama and Trump administration sides.
Obama officials, they said, explained what the Trump administration would have to do when faced with a pandemic. The model scenario was similar to the coronavirus outbreak: an outbreak that crops up in Asia, spreads to the US, and exposes problems like shortages of ventilators and antiviral drugs.