TAPPER: All right. Dr. Shah, officials say 180 tons of relief have been delivered to the airport. How many of the 180 tons has made their way to the Haitian people?
SHAH: Well, you know, I first want to step back and point out that, immediately after this happened on Tuesday, just before sundown -- and this is an earthquake of tremendous proportions, as the general points out -- the president immediately asked us to mount a swift, aggressive and coordinated response.
And so that's why we've mobilized a broad range of civilian and military capabilities. Nearly every part of our government, including DHS, my agency, the U.S. Agency for International Development, the military, our Health and Human Services, are all involved.
And immediately we began putting in place the -- the capabilities and doing the work to make sure we could get as much commodity flow and as much services down in Haiti to the people of Haiti as possible.
TAPPER: Right. But it's five days later, and still a lot of the relief effort, a lot of the aid has not gotten to the people who need it most.
SHAH: Well, it is five -- it is five days later. And -- and, you know, here's what we've done. We've -- we were the first people on the ground with the disaster assistance response team. Our urban search-and-rescue teams from Fairfax, Virginia, or Florida or California were the first teams there. They've had successes, working around the clock.
I met these teams yesterday when I was in Haiti. They work around the clock to save lives. They've saved dozens of lives, most of which are Haitian. They've also coordinated the efforts of nearly 27 other teams from countries around the world so that we have thousands of people engaged in active search-and-rescue...
TAPPER: I don't think anybody -- nobody doubts the sincerity of the effort or that you -- or the USAID and the U.S. military are doing everything they can to save lives. I think -- no one's saying you're not doing a good job or you're not working hard. But, obviously, the supplies are not getting to the people who need them most right now. What do you need?
SHAH: Well, here -- here's what we need and here's how we're doing it. We started with an effort that was focused primarily on saving lives in urban search-and-rescue. In parallel, we've put in place the conditions to allow for significant commodity and supply support to get to the people of Haiti.
Doing that took -- you know, initially, the airport was not functional. The U.S. military got in quickly, established a relationship with the government of Haiti. We are doing this in partnership with the Haitian government. I met with the president yesterday on this point and -- and secured the airport so that -- and is now operating the airport so that we can increase significantly throughput, which allows all countries, including ours, to get much more supply in there.
TAPPER: Right, there's 180 tons there right now. How much of that has gone out? And -- and why hasn't more gone out? SHAH: Well, I -- I don't know the exact number. There are not a lot of supplies piling up at the airport. Things that are getting there are going out. The challenge is, we're talking about 3.5 million people in need. We're talking about a significant degradation of what was already relatively weak infrastructure, no port access. Roads are -- are difficult to get around.