“It is true that the food left in the offices, when the maximum remote work has been done, is a contributing factor in the offices having problems with pest control,” said FDA spokeswoman Stephanie Kakomo.
Technical staff are unable to enter separate offices on campus, citing “sensitive and national security information” of the agency’s work, Kakomo added.
According to the agency, less than 10 percent of office building space on a white oak campus is affected by the field mice problem. The mice are in the commissioner’s office, at the Center for Drug Assessment and Research, and at the Center for Devices and Radiological Health.
“Employees who have a pest control problem are given temporary office space, or asked to work full-time until their designated office is ready to return,” Kakomo said.
“To be clear, neither pest control nor other facility issues affect the agency’s return to facilities,” he added, reducing the agency’s operations.
Former FDA Officials have given anonymity to POLITICO to address the issue of rodents, saying that field mice are ahead of a pandemic. The FDA began consolidating operations in the Washington region of White Oak in the early 2000s, an attempt that culminated in 2014.
A former FDA spokesman said staff attributed the mouse problem to the construction of a nearly 700-acre campus in early 2010, adding that the office building that housed most of the FDA staff in Rockwell, Medicine, had no major mouse problems. .
“It does not seem to have disappeared,” the man said, especially in the area of the White Oak Campus, which was built in later years.
Another former official agreed, noting that even before the pandemic, mouse traps would be installed in certain offices “at any time.”
“The commission office, Building 1, was full of mice,” a former high-ranking FDA official told POLITICO.
AdvaMed CEO Scott Whitaker – leader of the largest medical device group in the medical device business – does not think challenging field mice will affect the agency’s performance.
“The last thing I knew was that they were still mostly working from home and have been working for two years now,” Whitaker said. “So, ordinary business in one sense.”
The FDA is working with the General Services Administration to develop a plan for cleaning and sanitizing office space. Kakomo noted that all large government and non-government campuses relate to pest control as part of the facility’s routine care.
“The white oak campus is located on an area of 662 hectares, which is mainly fields, green spaces and forests, which creates a natural habitat for field mice,” said Kakomo. “When the weather is colder, mice look for ways to enter buildings to find heat and food.”
A former FDA spokesman who recalled the outrage over a decade ago with mice at the headquarters noted that the constant problem is another headache for the agency. His staff return to the office after an unprecedented workload that lasted more than two years.
“I know they think about going back, but nothing kills morale [like] “Open your desk two years later and find evidence of mice,” said the man. “This is not really something that people are fascinated by.”
Mice occupy FDA offices after food left over during a pandemic
Source link Mice occupy FDA offices after food left over during a pandemic