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Congressional Inaction On Zika, Other Global Health Preparedness Funding Increases Risks Of Future Outbreaks, Media Sources Report

Medill National Security Reporting Project/VICE News: This U.S. government program may have stopped Ebola — but never had the funding it requested
“Six years ago, the scientist leading the U.S. government’s program to catch diseases before they turn into global pandemics went to Capitol Hill with a map of the world. Dr. Scott Dowell was meeting with key congressional staffers to warn them about what he believed were gaping holes in the system designed to detect and contain infectious disease outbreaks, before they could kill thousands or potentially millions of people. In 2010, Dowell was leading the much-touted Global Disease Detection Program at the headquarters of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta. Congress had established the GDD program in 2004, to ‘protect the health of Americans and the global community by developing and strengthening public health capacity to rapidly detect and respond to emerging infectious diseases and bioterrorist threats.’ … Dowell wasn’t the only one sounding the alarm…” (7/8).

POLITICO: Why Congress’s Zika impasse could awaken Ebola menace
“While Congress dithers over the advancing Zika virus, another smoldering epidemic keeps threatening to burst back into flame. Ebola. Emergency funds to fight that deadly virus may run out in October because they were poached to fight Zika … And that’s a major problem because while Ebola has subsided as a threat, it hasn’t ended. … [T]he idea that Ebola is ‘over’ has colored the increasingly partisan stalemate on how much to spend on Zika and where the money should come from…” (Allen, 7/9).

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