2009, Number 4
V. The role of the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR), within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, in global preparedness and response to pandemic influenza
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ABSTRACTWhen animal influenza viruses evolve the capacity to infect and transmit among immune-naïve human populations, they may rapidly spread throughout the globe, resulting in significant levels of morbidity and mortality. To prepare for and mitigate the consequences of such an event, extensive preparedness efforts are underway in many nations. The U.S. Government, including the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), is involved in a number of international initiatives on influenza preparedness. Through these mechanisms, the United States provides financial support, and technical assistance, to partner countries; and contributes to research, surveillance, manufacturing capacity, and response. Mexico and the United States collaborate extensively on preparedness; resulting in, for example, the North American Plan for Avian and Pandemic Influenza and a technology transfer initiative to increase influenza vaccine manufacturing capacity.
The HHS Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR) has the responsibility of preparing for, and responding to, public health emergencies. Within ASPR, the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) supports the innovation, development, stockpile building, and building of infrastructure to manufacture medical countermeasures, such as vaccines, antimicrobial drugs, and diagnostics for pandemic influenza, emerging infectious diseases, and chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear threats.
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