NIH, CDC Need Funds To Continue Zika Vaccine Research, Response; Experts Testify More Can Be Done To Educate Public About Prevention

CQ News: NIH, CDC Say They’ll Be Strapped Without New Zika Funds
“The National Institutes of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention were dealt a significant blow to their Zika response plans on Tuesday when the Senate failed to move forward with a spending bill meant to boost the federal fight against the virus, officials with those agencies told CQ. … Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases at NIH, said in an interview that his agency will run out of money ‘soon’ to continue its ongoing Zika-related research and the second phase of a Zika vaccine trial…” (Shutt, 6/29).

CQ News: Congress Can Take Small Steps Now on Zika, Groups Say
“With the Senate at an impasse over how to proceed on a response to the Zika virus, the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee invited experts to discuss preparation for the spread of the virus, which can cause birth defects in babies when pregnant women are infected. Some experts testified that more can be done to teach people about mosquito control on their own properties and that some populations needed easier access to contraception to guard against a disease that can also be spread sexually…” (Siddons, 6/29).

The Hill: Zika vaccine trials could halt without new funds, official says
“…[Fauci] said that so far, the NIH has been able to go forward with vaccine research by shifting money from other areas. He hopes to start phase I trials in late August or early September. That money has come from funding to combat the 2014 Ebola epidemic and other diseases, such as tuberculosis, Fauci said. But he warned that for the phase II trials, there will be no more money to shift over…” (Sullivan, 6/29).

USA TODAY: Fauci: Zika vaccine efforts may be halted without Congressional funding
“… ‘If we don’t get the money, it’s not question of speed or not, it’s a question of whether the vaccine effort will be blunted or completely aborted,’ said Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease at the National Institutes of Health…” (Miller, 6/29).

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