The reauthorization of the Pandemic and All Hazards Preparedness Act (PAHPA) approved by the House of Representatives today includes measures that are critical to ensure that our nation has the resources and expertise needed to confront, control and combat emerging public health threats. Key to that is a provision supporting the development of a trained and ready public health workforce with loan repayment opportunities for individuals serving in U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Epidemic Intelligence Service, a program that provides expert responders and trains future public health leaders. In addition, the bill approved today by House members supports additional important initiatives through the Department of Health and Human Services Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority to address antimicrobial resistance including with strategies to drive the development of new drugs.
Today as well, the Senate released its reauthorization bill with those essential provisions, as well as with additional funding for BARDA. The Infectious Diseases Society of America has led efforts to make lawmakers aware of needs to strengthen the workforce of expert responders, and to address the growing threat of antimicrobial resistance, in this legislation as well as in other funding and policy opportunities. We now urge swift passage of the Senate bill with robust funding to support its measures. We look forward to a full reauthorization of PAHPA and to working with Congress on continued endeavors to prevent, detect and respond to the emerging infectious disease challenges, including antimicrobial resistance, that threaten public health.