Preparedness Pulsepoints | Monitoring USG action on readiness and response
Published by the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security
Sanjana Ravi, MPH, Editor
April 10, 2018
Public Health & Healthcare Preparedness
WEBINAR
Medical Countermeasures: Legal Frameworks and Approaches. Brooke Courtney, JD, MPH from the FDA Office of Counterterrorism and Emerging Threats will discuss FDA roles in supporting the emergency use of medical countermeasures. The webinar will take place on April 11, 2018, 1-2 PM EST. (FDA, 4/9/18)
BLOG
Making the World Safer from Health Threats. Amb. Deborah Birx explains why today, thanks to American leadership and the generosity of the American people, much of Africa has a far more robust health care capacity and infrastructure to not only address HIV/AIDS, but also to prevent, detect, and respond to other public health threats. This is largely because of PEPFAR. (Department of State, 4/6/18)
PRESS RELEASE
Research Offers Clues for Improved Influenza Vaccine Design. Influenza vaccines that better target the influenza surface protein called neuraminidase (NA) could offer broad protection against various influenza virus strains and lessen the severity of illness. (NIH, 4/6/18)
NEWS
Priority Review for Paratek's Antibiotic. FDA accepted and granted Priority Review to two NDAs from Paratek Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ:PRTK) for omadacycline to treat community-acquired bacterial pneumonia (CABP) and acute bacterial skin and skin structure infections. (Biocentury, 4/5/18)
PODCAST
USAID Global Health: Are We Ready for the Next Outbreak? The recent outbreaks of Ebola and Zika demonstrate the need for new and improved tools to fight infectious diseases. Episode one provides the context around current and future efforts in the prevention of and response to infectious disease outbreaks. Episodes two and three detail how USAID identifies and invests in the most promising ideas, and applies market-oriented approaches to reduce the time it takes to transform ideas in a lab to impact on the ground. (USAID Global Health, 4/4/18)

See also: 
NEWS
Gottlieb Says Facebook, Other Tech Companies Must Do More to Stop Illicit Opioid Sales. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg is set to appear on Capitol Hill next week to talk about how tech companies protect user data, but FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb has a different bone to pick: holding tech companies accountable for illicit opioids bought and sold on their platforms. (STAT News, 4/4/18)

See also:
PRESS RELEASE
Germs with Unusual Antibiotic Resistance Widespread in US. Health departments working with CDC's Antibiotic Resistance (AR) Lab Network found more than 220 instances of germs with "unusual" antibiotic resistance genes in the United States last year, according to a CDC Vital Signs report released today.  (CDC, 4/3/18)

See also:
NEWS
The World's Fastest Drones Want to Save Lives in America, Too. Zipline operates the entire chain, from the medical worker sending in an order for blood, to locating the right product in its distribution center, programming the flight path into a drone, and launching it. Within the next month, the FAA is due to announce that it will allow wider-scale testing of delivery systems in American airspace. (Wired, 4/3/18)
PRESS RELEASE
CARB-X Partners with Specific Diagnostics to Support the Development of a Rapid Accurate Test to Diagnose Life-Threatening Drug-Resistant Infections in the Blood. CARB-X funding will support the development and testing of Specific's product, which is designed to quickly detect the emitted volatile molecules that are the first sign of bacterial growth in the blood and to determine which antibiotic is most suited to kill the bacteria. (CARB-X, 4/3/18)
BLOG
Evaluating Communication Campaigns. Designing and implementing quality campaigns on a tight budget and in an urgent timeframe is a challenge that most health communication professionals share. Research and evaluation are critical for a successful campaign. CDC is using leading research and evaluation methods to develop quality campaigns, while keeping costs low and sticking to tight timelines.  (CDC, 4/2/18)
BLOG
Emergency Smart Pods -- Transforming Containers into Modern Medical Clinics. As Dr. Sharmila Anandasabapathy and her team further refined the portable clinic idea, they were selected as one of 14 winners of USAID's Fighting Ebola Grand Challenge, which aimed to provide health care workers on the front lines with better tools to battle the epidemic. (Department of State, 4/2/18)
FACT SHEET
Reliable Vaccine Storage. As much as 35 percent of vaccines shipped worldwide is wasted because it is transported or stored at temperatures too high or too low. NIST's research is helping the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend effective ways for vaccine providers to protect their vaccines and reduce waste. (NIST, 4/18)
BLOG
We're Committed to Guarding Against the Intentional Adulteration of Food and Implementing the New Rule Efficiently. The US food supply is among the safest in the world. But to keep it safe we must recognize that our foods are vulnerable - not just from unintended contamination, but from those who would seek to deliberately do us harm. (FDA, 3/28/18)

BROAD AGENCY ANNOUNCEMENT
Advanced and Innovative Solutions to Improve Public Health. Funding of research within CDC will be determined by funding availability and the following broad research priorities, which include, but are not limited to: new diagnostic, sequencing, and metagenomic tools for AR detection and improved antibiotic use; approaches to prevention and control of parasitic infections in the US; and surveillance and control of arthropod vectors of human pathogens. (FedBizOpps, 3/26/18)
REPORT
Department of Health and Human Services: FY2019 Budget Request. The report begins by reviewing the department's mission and structure. Next, the report offers a brief explanation of the conventions used for the FY2018 estimates and FY2019 request levels in the budget documents released by the HHS and the Office of Management and Budget. (Congressional Research Service, 3/22/18)
Homeland Security & Disaster Preparedness
PRESS RELEASE
USDA Implements up to $2.36 Billion to Help Agricultural Producers Recover after 2017 Hurricanes and Wildfires. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue announced the US Department of Agriculture will make disaster payments of up to $2.36 billion, as provided by Congress, to help America's farmers and ranchers recover from hurricanes and wildfires. The funds are available as part of the new 2017 Wildfires and Hurricanes Indemnity Program.  (USDA, 4/6/18)
NEWS
The Risks, and Rewards, for Giving the Counter WMD Mission to SOCOM. The Department of Defense recently transferred the Counter WMD mission lead from US Strategic Command to US Special Operations Command (SOCOM), signaling a shift in strategy that places greater emphasis on identifying and preventing threats before they metastasize into crises. (Defense News, 4/6/18)
NEWS
New FCC Policy Would be a "Death Sentence" for Puerto Ricans Recovering from Hurricanes Maria and Irma. A new rule championed by Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai would limit internet and phone access for millions of low-income and elderly Americans. Pai's proposed changes to the Lifeline program, which currently serves 12 million Americans by providing subsidized phone and internet service, would cut service to about 70 percent, or 8 million, of them. Many of these recipients live in Puerto Rico and rely on Lifeline for assistance as they recover from Hurricanes Maria and Irma. (Newsweek, 4/5/18)
NEWS
FEMA has a "Blunt" New Message: It Won't Be There for Every Future Disaster. "FEMA is not a first responder," Daniel Kaniewski, the agency's deputy administrator, said in a speech Wednesday at George Washington University's Center for Cyber and Homeland Security. "We are going to be very blunt with the American public about what FEMA can and can't do, about what the federal government can and can't do, and I hope state and local governments take this forward as well."  (Federal News Radio, 4/4/18)

See also: 
NEWS
Nikki Haley Issues New Warning Over Syria Chemical Weapons Attacks. "The Assad regime continued using chemical weapons against the Syrian people," she said. "One member of this council shielded the Assad regime from any consequences, and then blocked us from renewing the Joint Investigative Mechanism. Our consensus broke down."  (CBS, 4/4/18)
PRESS RELEASE
Reps. Tulsi Gabbard, Colleen Hanabusa Introduce Billto Increase Hawai'i Nationwide Civil Defense Preparedness. The Civil Defense Preparedness Act of 2018 (H.R. 5399) would expand existing Department of Homeland Security terrorism and catastrophic event grant programs to include improving nuclear, biological, and chemical attack preparedness. The grants would be used for training, protective equipment, building reinforcements, and other community preparedness measures. (Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard, 4/2/18)
REPORT
United States Fire Administration: An Overview. The objective of the USFA is to significantly reduce the nation's loss of life from fire, while also achieving a reduction in property loss and nonfatal injury due to fire.  (Congressional Research Service, 3/27/18)

REPORT
2017 Disaster Supplemental Appropriations: Overview. As Congress considers supplemental appropriations in response to disasters and chooses how to proceed, it faces a variety of issues, including the appropriate application of budget discipline when disaster relief is requested from the federal government, the appropriate breadth and promptness of the federal investment, and how to ensure that the funding provided is not spent on wasteful or fraudulent endeavors. This report also briefly explores those issues.  (Congressional Research Service, 3/20/18)
Radiological & Nuclear Disaster Preparedness
BLOG
Experts in Radiological Emergency Response Exercise Technical Readiness. Police officers, firefighters, and emergency medical technicians are often the first responders on-site when a crisis situation affects the public. NNSA's Radiological Assistance Program teams are the first nuclear or radiological experts to respond when necessary. (NNSA, 4/6/18)
NEWS
FDA Approves Leukine for Treating Radiation in Nuclear Emergencies. The US Food and Drug Administration last week approved Leukine for use in adult and pediatric patients afflicted with Acute Radiation Syndrome, adding a third medical countermeasure to the nation's stock for radiological and nuclear emergencies. (Homeland Preparedness News, 4/4/18)
Science & Technology Policy
PERSPECTIVE
Cyberbiosecurity: An Emerging New Discipline to Help Safeguard the Bioeconomy. Authors from Virginia Tech, FBI, University of Nebraska, and Colorado State University explain how cyberbiosecurity is being proposed as a formal new enterprise which encompasses cybersecurity, cyber-physical security and biosecurity as applied to biological and biomedical-based systems. (Frontiers in Bioengineering and Biotechnology, 4/5/18)
PRESS RELEASE
HHS Releases a New Resource to Help Individuals Access and Use Their Health Information. The US Department of Health and Human Services' Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) today released the ONC Guide to Getting and Using your Health Records, a new online resource for individuals, patients, and caregivers. (Department of Health & Human Services, 4/4/18)
This Week's Hearings
FEMA: Prioritizing a Culture of Preparedness. US Senate Committee on Homeland Security & Governmental Affairs. 4/11/18, 10 AM. Dirksen 342. More
Local Responses and Resources to Curtain the Opioid Epidemic. US House Committee on Oversight & Government Reform, Subcommittee on Healthcare, Benefits, and Administrative Rules. 4/11/18, 10 AM. Rayburn 2154. More
The Opioid Crisis Response Act of 2018. US Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor & Pensions. 4/11/18, 10 AM. Dirksen 430. More
Update on the Restoration of Puerto Rico's Electric Infrastructure. US House Committee on Energy & Commerce, Subcommittee on Oversight & Investigations. 4/11/18, 2 PM. Rayburn 2123. More
Combating the Opioid Crisis: Improving the Ability of Medicare and Medicaid to Provide Care for Patients. US House Committee on Energy & Commerce, Subcommittee on Health. 4/11/18, 2:15 PM. Rayburn 2322. More
Defeating Fentanyl: Addressing the Deadliest Drugs Fueling the Opioid Crisis. US Senate Committee on the Judiciary, Subcommittee on Crime and Terrorism. 4/11/18, 2:30 PM. Dirksen 226. More
Are We Ready for the Next Hurricane Season? Status of Preparation and Response Capabilities for 2018. US Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation. 4/12/18, 9:45 AM. Russell 253. More
Global Health Supply Chain Management: Lessons Learned and Ways Forward. US House Committee on Foreign Affairs, Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, Global Human Rights, and International Organizations. 4/12/18, 2 PM. Rayburn 2172. More
FY 2019 Budget Hearing - Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). US House Committee on Appropriations, Subcommittee on Homeland Security. 4/13/18, 11 AM. Rayburn 2359. More
 

 

facebook icon   twitter icon
Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security logo