Since the start of the pandemic, there have been attempts by legislators to limit the power of state and county health officers. Do you believe health officers need to be reined in? Why or why not?
Dr. Timothy Hallinan
I have favored a more hands-on approach from the Legislature in regard to the pandemic. To that extent, the health officers should be guided, but not reined in by the Legislature.
One of my main issues with the controls we have had to face are with the nursing home regulations. Mostly, they have been controlled by the federal government, and until very recently the visitation to the nursing facilities have been overly restrictive.
This has caused unnecessary harm to our elderly family members by the isolation they have been forced to live under.
This went on until September when some modifications were finally introduced. This left the elderly folks isolated for six months.
I believe that a more aggressive approach by the health officer, backed by the Legislature, could have intervened earlier with a good effect.