President Biden recently launched the administration’s new National Biodefense Strategy and Implementation Plan. The strategy reflects changing dynamics in Washington, especially given the lack of additional funding for COVID.
National BiodefenseStrategy and Implementation Summarized
The plan calls for $88B in additional funding over 5 years and is focused on the following goals:
- Detect pandemics and other biological threats. This portion is focused on transforming early warning systems to provide real-time information to decision-makers. The goal is to create a “national weather service” for infectious disease outbreaks.
- Prevent outbreaks from becoming epidemics and prevent incidents before they happen. By focusing on prevention, the administration hopes to avoid a new pandemic altogether. This effort includes strengthening laboratory security and safety as well as deterring the use of bioweapons.
- Prepare for pandemics and other biological incidents. The administration hopes to strengthen and modernize public health capacity so that new outbreaks can be identified and controlled quickly. A consistent theme has been a focus on timelines, including the key 100-day mission. In other words, the administration would like to be able to produce tests and vaccines within 100 days of an outbreak.
- Rapidly respond to outbreaks when they occur. The goal is to be able to launch a coordinated federal response to a significant biological threat within 14 days of the outbreak.
- Recover from a pandemic or biological incident. The administration will centralize oversight and policy at the White House to speed recovery efforts.
A Shift to Preventing Future Pandemics
Overall, the new National Biodefense Strategy and Implementation marks a shift from spending on current vaccines and therapeutics to the prevention of future pandemics. The ambitious plan is nothing short of a Manhattan Project for the prevention of future pandemics. The obstacle to the implementation of this plan, or any plan, will be funding. Without billions in additional appropriations, the nation risks being wholly unprepared for the next pandemic.
Reach out to Everglade for practical advice with Government Contract Compliance.