Combatting Future Biological Threats

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Published by the White House, this key strategy document, “American Pandemic Preparedness: Transforming Our Capabilities,” outlines critical action needed to transform the United States’ “capabilities to respond rapidly and effectively to any future pandemic of high consequence biological threat.” The preparedness and response plan identifies the following five pillars as key areas requiring urgent attention in the effort to protect the country against future biological threats:

  1. Transforming our medical defenses, including dramatically improving and expanding our arsenal of vaccines, therapeutics and diagnostics.
  2. Ensuring situational awareness about infectious disease threats, for both early warning and real-time monitoring.
  3. Strengthening public health systems, both in the United States and internationally, enabling them to respond to emergencies, with a particular focus on reducing inequities and protecting the most vulnerable communities.
  4. Building core capabilities, including personal protective equipment, stockpiles and supply chains, biosafety and biosecurity, and regulatory improvement.
  5. Managing the mission with the seriousness of purpose, commitment and accountability, akin to the Apollo mission which took our astronauts to the moon decades ago.

To read a copy of the strategy plan, visit