From: Jackson, David M [mailto:email@example.com]
Sent: Thursday, September 24, 2015 3:19 PM
To: Velz, Peter T. EOP
Subject: Pool Report 1
Sept. 24, 2015
Pool Report 1
Public Health Meeting
President Obama praises and awards citations to public health professionals who fought Ebola in West Africa -- and he also invokes the Pope and the prospect of a government shutdown.
Flanked by eight members of the Public Health Service Commissioned Corps -- four on each side -- Obama said their fight against Ebola in West Africa reflected the Pope's call that leaders practice "the golden rule" and exhibit "a sense of morality" in government.
"These are individuals who represent that spirit," Obama said.
Calling the health professionals the best that public service has to offer, Obama also said he hopes that Congress votes "to keep our government open and operating."
Obama stood at a lectern in front of the Oval Office fireplace, beneath the portrait of George Washington.
In his comments, Obama noted that health professionals are among the first to respond to disasters -- from 9/11 to Hurricane Sandy to the Boston Marathon bombing -- and often do so at great personal risk.
"These are the folks who have been there, from the start."
Their work against Ebola in Africa was an "example of American leadership," and helped the U.S and other nations prepare for any future outbreaks, the president said.
Ebola cases in West Africa are "not yet at absolute zero," he added, but cases are now "much more sporadic."
Pool entered Oval Office at 2:47 p.m., and exited less than six minutes later.
Obama ignored shouted questions about Putin and other matters.
Some background from the White House:
September 30th marks the one-year anniversary of the Centers for Disease Control reporting the first case of Ebola in the United States. This afternoon, the President met with members of the Public Health Service Commissioned Corps (PHS CC) and signed a citation awarding the Presidential Unit Citation to PHS CC members who participated in the Ebola containment efforts in West Africa. These professionals from the U.S. Public Health Service were some of the Americans on the front lines of that effort, and like so many others, they signed up to leave their loved ones and head straight into the heart of the Ebola epidemic, at considerable risk to themselves. This was the largest medical deployment in the history of the PHS – and all team members returned home safely. Many even volunteered to return to West Africa to help.
• Sylvia M. Burwell, Secretary, Department of Health and Human Services
• Dr. Karen DeSalvo, Assistant Secretary for Health
• Vice Admiral Vivek M. Murthy, United States Surgeon General
• Amy Pope, Deputy Assistant to the President and Ebola Response Coordinator
• Rear Admiral Scott F. Giberson, Commander of the PHS CC Ebola Response
• CAPT Calvin Edwards, Officer-in-Charge, Team 1
• CAPT Dean Coppola, Officer-in-Charge, Team 3
• CAPT Jose Belardo, Officer-in-Charge, Team 4
• Rear Admiral Boris Lushniak, Officer-in-Charge of MMU transition between teams
• Rear Admiral Trent-Adams, Officer-in-Charge of MMU transition between teams
• CAPT Dan Beck, Deputy Commander of the PHS CC Ebola Response