Trump Gets It Wrong, Again: No Lancet Report Warning of Wuhan Coronavirus Outbreak in December 2019

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Lancet knocks Trump for ‘factually incorrect’ statement in letter warning of WHO funding cuts

by Justine Coleman/The Hill

Read Lancet Statement

The Lancet medical journal knocked President Trump on Tuesday for a “factually incorrect” statement in his letter warning of World Health Organization (WHO) funding cuts.



The medical journal released a statement saying Trump’s claim that the journal published reports in December 2019 or earlier about a coronavirus outbreak in Wuhan, China, were wrong.

“This statement is factually incorrect,” the journal said in a statement posted on Twitter. “The Lancet published no report in December, 2019, referring to a virus or outbreak in Wuhan or anywhere else in China.”

Trump wrote in the letter released Monday night that the WHO “consistently ignored credible reports of the virus spreading in Wuhan in early December 2019 or even earlier, including reports from the Lancet medical journal.”

The president’s Monday night letter to the WHO director-general threatened to permanently stop U.S. funds to WHO and withdraw the country from the WHO if it “does not commit to major substantive improvements within the next 30 days.”

The Lancet said it first published reports on coronavirus on Jan. 24, including one involving the first 41 patients diagnosed with COVID-19 in Wuhan. The researchers for that report were all from Chinese institutions.

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