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U.S. Should Champion Proposal For World Bank To Allocate More Funding To Disease Outbreak Preparedness

Fox News: Drs. Thomas Frieden, Margaret Hamburg: There’s a limited window to make America safer from epidemics
Tom Frieden and Margaret Hamburg, members of the CSIS Commission on Strengthening America’s Health Security

“…In one week, the World Bank will decide how to allocate more than $50 billion in development funding to lower income countries. The World Bank should dedicate some of its International Development Association (IDA) funds — say, 5 percent, or about $1 billion per year over three years — to help countries become better prepared for infectious disease outbreaks. The United States delegation should champion this initiative and insist on both fundings for preparedness and accountability for progress. … Disease outbreaks can wipe out years of investments and severely damage development. Economic losses can dwarf the cost of response … Because of its global reach, the World Bank is in the best position to take the lead on this critical effort, but the United States delegation has one week to make sure it does so at its annual meeting on June 17. The total needed to close preparedness gaps is estimated at about $4.5 billion annually, less than $1 per person per year. An additional $1 billion infusion each year for the next three years will provide a tremendous jump start — and is a bargain the United States cannot afford to miss” (6/10).