News & Perspective

Dec 26, 2012

Dec 26, 2012

Experts differ on HHS select-agent proposal for H5N1

(CIDRAP News) – Some professional groups and scientists think it's a good idea to classify highly pathogenic avian (HPAI) H5N1 influenza viruses as "select agents" requiring special research precautions, while others say the step is unnecessary and would impede research, according to comments they have filed with the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).

Dec 17, 2012

Dec 17, 2012

H5N1 researchers question proposed HHS funding framework

(CIDRAP News) – Federal health officials are in the midst of crafting a framework for funding H5N1 avian influenza gain-of-function studies, and today at a workshop they heard varied feedback from researchers, biosecurity experts, and others.

Dec 11, 2012

Dec 11, 2012

HHS offers some forecasts on medical countermeasures

(CIDRAP News) – A new report from the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) offers a few predictions on when certain new countermeasures against biological threats will become available, including a forecast for two novel influenza drugs and possibly a next-generation anthrax vaccine within the next 5 years.

Oct 30, 2012

Oct 30, 2012

CDC profiles wide range of global flu activities

(CIDRAP News) – An annual report released yesterday by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) profiles a wide range of CDC influenza-related projects around the world, from flu surveillance in Indonesia to vaccine effectiveness studies in El Salvador and epidemiology training in Ghana.

Oct 18, 2012

Oct 18, 2012

HHS seeks comments on risks of H5N1 research

(CIDRAP News) – Federal health officials are inviting the public to weigh in on whether research on H5N1 avian influenza viruses, including strains modified in the lab to make them more transmissible, is risky enough to require new safety regulations and precautions.

Sep 26, 2012

Sep 26, 2012

States again score well in CDC preparedness report

(CIDRAP News) – State and local public health departments generally maintained or improved their capabilities for testing and identifying biological agents and coordinating emergency responses in 2011, according to an annual report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on state public health preparedness.

Sep 14, 2012

Sep 14, 2012

Policymakers plot next pandemic flu preparedness steps

(CIDRAP News) – US influenza policy experts who gathered in Washington, DC, today called for better vaccines and other steps for improving pandemic and seasonal flu preparedness, themes echoed in an action plan released by the Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA).

Aug 17, 2012

Aug 17, 2012

Public health officials respond to critique of BioWatch

In the wake of a newspaper investigation that questioned the value of the federal BioWatch program for detecting dangerous airborne pathogens, some public health officials familiar with the program acknowledge that it's far from perfect, but they say it's not time to scrap it.

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