'Breakdown ' in health screening at border
More incompetence at the border as it appears that there is a breakdown in health screening of illegal alien kids that has led to outbreaks of disease at detention centers around the country.
When an illegal child is processed at the border, they are supposed to receive a check up to make sure they aren't carrying any communicable diseases before being flown to detention centers around the country. ABC News obtained a memo from an HHS official that claims the crush of illegal aliens is so big that some kids are slipping through the cracks and being processed without the check up.
The result is predictable.
The director of refugee health in the federal Health and Human Services Department “has identified a breakdown of the medical screening processes at the Nogales, Arizona, facility,” according to an internal Department of Defense memo reviewed by ABC News. The “breakdown” a systemic failure of the handoff of these children between CBP and HHS.
Inside the government, officials are sounding alarms, fearing that they and their teams who come in contact with the sick children face potential exposure to infectious diseases from chicken pox to influenza, including rare cases of H1N1, more commonly called swine flu.
Two unaccompanied children were flown from Nogales to California despite having 101-degree fevers and flu-like symptoms, according to the Department of Defense memo. Those children had to be hospitalized.
The memo said pointedly that officials in charge of moving the immigrants from Border Patrol processing centers to Health and Human Services facilities are “putting sick [fevers and coughing] unaccompanied children on airplanes inbound for [Naval Base Ventura County] in addition to the chicken pox and coxsackie virus cases.”
The document said three other kids were in the ICU at local hospitals in California, and two of them were diagnosed with strep pneumonia.
Less than a week later, that same Ventura Naval Base suffered an outbreak of pneumonia and influenza among the unaccompanied minors inside the shelter.
“Preliminary reports indicate that several unaccompanied minors in the shelter had become ill with what appears to be pneumonia and influenza,” according to a statement from the Administration for Children and Families at Health and Human Services.
HHS told ABC News the children were supposed to be screened for sickness before leaving the Border Patrol screening centers.
“When the children arrive at U.S. border stations,” the ACF statement read, “they are screened for health problems and given medical treatment if needed.”
But, according to the memo ABC News reviewed, “Curi Kim [the HHS director of the Division of Refugee Health] has identified a breakdown of the medical screening processes at the Nogales, Arizona, facility. The [unaccompanied children] were initially screened and cleared upon entry into that facility with no fever or significant symptoms. They were not however re-screened and cleared for travel and placement at a temporary shelter.”
While confirming to ABC News the outbreak occurred, HHS would not respond to inquiries about the DOD memo showing sick children were knowingly sent to Naval Base Ventura prior to the outbreak.
How do you lose track of whether a kid has been checked out medically or not? Amazing incompetence. And dangerous too. Lord knows what other diseases these kds are carrying and it wouldn't take much for a communicable disease to make the jump from a detention center to an urban population.
The problem is only going to get worse as the number of illegal alien children is set to double over the next 12 months. I am not confident that the Feds will be able to get their act together to deal wiith the health crisis these kids represent. And when you consider that school starts in a couple of months, you have to wonder what effect the health of the illegal alien kids will have on communities where they are to be educated.