WASHINGTON, DC - JUNE 23: Dr. Robert Redfield, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, testifies at a hearing of the House Committee on Energy and Commerce on Capitol Hill on June 23, 2020 in Washington, DC. The committee is investigating the Trump administration's response to the COVID-19 pandemic. (Photo by Kevin Dietsch-Pool/Getty Images)

Covid-19 has “brought this nation to its knees,” Dr. Robert Redfield, director of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said Tuesday in a House hearing.

“We’ve all done the best that we can do to tackle this virus,” Redfield said during a House Energy and Commerce Committee hearing.

“We’re going to probably spend close to $7 trillion because of one little virus,” he said. 

Redfield said the virus has highlighted decades of underinvesting in the “core capabilities of public health data.” Now is the time to fix the broken system, he added.

“This needs to be a partnership. It’s not all the burden of the federal government to invest in public health at the local level,” Redfield said. In reality, “if your funding of CDC was to go away tomorrow, public health infrastructure across this nation would just crash.”

“We’re right now the backbone of it,” he added.