Vaccine Preparedness Critical To Responding To Emerging Infectious Diseases

Science: Ebola and Zika: Cautionary tales
Michael T. Osterholm, director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy (CIDRAP) at the University of Minnesota

“…When surveillance points to a possible emergence of a new infectious disease of potential public health importance, we need procedural and funding mechanisms that can quickly identify candidate vaccines and drive research and development toward licensure and production. … [The Ebola and Zika epidemics] demand better answers than our current vaccine research, development, manufacturing, and distribution system has provided. Based on observation, we could, and should, have anticipated that agents like Zika and Ebola virus would emerge as serious pathogens. … With the growth of megacities in the developing world and prevalence of Aedes aegypti mosquitoes in many areas, this disease should not have come as a surprise — nor should the host of others yet to come that we would be foolish not to expect” (9/9).