Marc Polymeropoulos, a retired C.I.A. officer who began experiencing signs of Havana syndrome in Moscow in 2017, stated that the federal government companies that display screen individuals with signs — together with the Protection Division, the State Division and the C.I.A. — wanted a constant methodology of doing so. The software, he stated, may additionally assist focus investigative efforts on the instances which are probably associated to Havana syndrome.
“You’ll want to transfer from a piecemeal to a whole-of-government method,” he stated. “They wanted to consolidate all of the reporting mechanisms of the completely different companies.”
Early final yr, the Biden administration and the C.I.A. started an intense hunt for what could possibly be inflicting the accidents. To date, that effort has not turned up any proof pointing to a supply. However some administration officers insist that the accidents are actual, and that they may proceed to search for a trigger.
The Biden administration has till April to draft guidelines for awarding compensation; the State Division and the C.I.A. are engaged on separate units of guidelines. As soon as they’re completed, the legislation requires the administration to temporary Congress. A State Division official stated the screening software was central to evaluating individuals with signs however was not a diagnostic software. In consequence, the official stated, it can’t be used for figuring out compensation.
The Havana Syndrome Thriller
What’s the Havana Syndrome? The mysterious sickness, which has affected navy officers, C.I.A. personnel and diplomats around the globe, manifests itself in a number of illnesses comparable to persistent headache, vertigo and nausea.
Whereas the legislation is meant to compensate sufferers for accidents associated to Havana syndrome, it additionally offers help for quite a lot of authorities service-related accidents. Underneath the laws, a C.I.A. officer who incurred a mind damage whereas serving in Iraq or Afghanistan may qualify for extra compensation.
Intelligence companies haven’t used the screening software to categorize incident experiences. Nonetheless, authorities officers and medical suppliers stated the software was serving to them study extra in regards to the signs related to Havana syndrome and the accidents individuals have been experiencing. It has helped individuals get care, the officers stated, even when they haven’t met the standards for a Havana syndrome case.
Dr. Pablo A. Celnik, the director of the division of bodily drugs and rehabilitation at Johns Hopkins Drugs, stated this system he oversees has handled just a few dozen sufferers who have been referred to the hospital after being screened by the triage software. To date, he stated, only some ended up having diagnosable diseases.