News & Perspective

Oct 29, 2008

Oct 29, 2008

Experts at HHS webinar cite key pandemic planning issues

(CIDRAP News) – The US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) today hosted an online conversation among experts, government officials, and members of the public that touched on emerging issues in pandemic planning, such as anticipating supply chain interruptions and keeping the momentum going during tough economic times.

Oct 22, 2008

Oct 22, 2008

GAO says tighter security needed at two BSL-4 labs

(CIDRAP News) – Two of the nation's five biosafety level 4 (BSL-4) labs lack outer-ring security controls to protect against a terrorist attack or theft of some of the world's most dangerous pathogens, such as the Ebola and smallpox viruses, according to a new report from the Governmental Accountability Office (GAO).

Oct 21, 2008

Oct 21, 2008

Group urges next administration to reform public health

(CIDRAP News) – Drawing on the expertise of more than 150 health experts, Trust for America's Health (TFAH), a nonprofit health advocacy group in Washington, DC, today released a report designed to help the next president and Congress reform the public health system to improve the nation's health and emergency preparedness.

Oct 20, 2008

Oct 20, 2008

FDA to open five overseas offices by year's end

(CIDRAP News) – Aiming to make imports safer, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) will open four overseas offices by the end of the year, starting with China and followed by India, Europe, and Latin America, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced recently.

Oct 17, 2008

Oct 17, 2008

US antiterrorism rules restrict vaccine exports

(CIDRAP News) – A recent Associated Press (AP) report revealed that, in the name of preventing biological attacks, the United States has rules barring the exportation of vaccines for avian influenza, smallpox, yellow fever, and many other pathogens to five countries classified as sponsors of terrorism.

Oct 16, 2008

Oct 16, 2008

Governors group identifies states' pandemic-preparedness gaps

(CIDRAP News) – State pandemic preparedness has improved over the past few years, but gaps remain, particularly in areas that don't relate directly to healthcare such as continuing government operations, maintaining essential services, and coordinating with the private sector, according to a recent report from the National Governors Association (NGA).

Oct 15, 2008

Oct 15, 2008

Rand report proposes standards for mass antibiotic dispensing

(CIDRAP News) – The Rand Corp., responding to a request from the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), recently unveiled a set of proposed standards for cities to use as they establish plans to distribute antibiotics to the public in the event of a bioterrorist attack or other public health emergency.

Oct 06, 2008

Oct 06, 2008

GAO urges HHS to speed antiviral, prepandemic vaccine plans

(CIDRAP News) – In a recent progress report to Congress on federal influenza pandemic response planning, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) recognized a host of obstacles but cited two areas that officials could make headway on: finalizing guidance on allocating antivirals and developing guidance on how to prioritize groups to receive prepandemic vaccine in the early stages of a pandemic.

Oct 03, 2008

Oct 03, 2008

Plant cancellation shows problems in flu vaccine business

(CIDRAP News) – A flu vaccine manufacturer's decision not to build a US facility has highlighted the perpetual mismatch between flu-shot supply and demand—and the reality that the mismatch may undermine plans for pandemic flu vaccines.

Oct 01, 2008

Oct 01, 2008

FDA approves CDC's new rapid flu test

(CIDRAP News) – The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) yesterday approved a new diagnostic test developed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) that can quickly distinguish seasonal influenza strains from an evolving virus that might have pandemic potential in hours rather than days.

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