Support the Pandemic and All-Hazards Preparedness and Advancing Innovation Act of 2018

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As a nurse and former paramedic, I believe that it is important to support the passage of this act into law.  Currently, it is on the Senate calendar and once passed will move to the House of Representatives.  I want an improved public health plan that reflects a better response for public health emergencies that are both natural and manmade.  This could be for hurricanes or pandemics but also will prepare us for a coordinated response to bioterrorism.  This act encompasses improved technology and communication as well as stockpiling medications/vaccinations, training of public health officials, preparing hospitals and EMS agencies to handle medical surges, and increasing research and development.

Senator Richard Burr introduced S.2852 Pandemic and All-Hazards Preparedness and Advancing Innovation Act (PAHPAI) of 2018 to the Senate on May 15, 2018 (UPDATE S.2852, 2018). This Act was placed on the Senate Legislative Calendar under General Orders on June 18th, 2018 as Calendar # 467 (UPDATE S.2852, 2018). The PAHPAI has bipartisan support from Senators Burr, Casey, Alexander, and Murray from the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee.

The PAHPAI will be reauthorizing and building upon the Pandemic and All-Hazards Preparedness Act (PAHPA). The PAHPA was first enacted in 2006 and then reauthorized in 2016. It provides our nation with the tools it needs to prepare for and respond to both internal and external public health threats whether natural or manmade such as pandemics, bioterrorism, or natural disasters that can cause a public health emergency.

In the United States Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, & Pensions (2018), Senator Bob Casey has been quoted as saying, “This reauthorization bill makes important improvements to our public health and healthcare preparedness programs and will help strengthen our communities’ ability to respond to the full range of public health threats” (para. 3). According to Lowell Weicker (2013) the PAHPAI will:
1. Strengthen the public health preparedness workforce; modernize and unify biosurveillance and health information technology.
2. Improve the nation's approach to the research, development, and production of medical countermeasures.
3. Extend the surge capacity of hospitals and emergency management.

The United States Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, & Pensions (2018) indicates Senator Murray supports this act and looks to bolster critical work to combat antimicrobial resistance and has been noted as saying he looks to prepare for crises with “foresight rather than simply learning from tragedies in hindsight” (para. 6). To better serve the nation and protect our public health the PAHPAI needs to be signed into law.

You can find a PDF version of this act here… https://www.burr.senate.gov/imo/media/doc/Final%20PAHPAI%20Discussion%20Draft%20SBS..pdf

Please support the Senate HELP Committee’s reauthorization of the hospital and public health preparedness programs contained within S.2852, the Pandemic and All-Hazards Preparedness and Advancing Innovation Act of 2018 by signing this petition below. Thank you.


References
United States Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, & Pensions. (2018). Senate HELP committee members release bipartisan discussion draft to combat bioterrorism and pandemics. Retrieved from https://www.help.senate.gov/chair/newsroom/press/senate-help-committee-members-release-bipartisan-discussion-draft-to-combat-bioterrorism-and-pandemics

UPDATE: S.2852 - pandemic and all-hazards preparedness and advancing innovation act of 2018. (2018, June 18). Congressional Documents and Publications. Retrieved from https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/senate-bill/2852/text

Weicker, L. (2013). Reauthorizing the pandemic and all-hazards preparedness act will help protect against bioterrorism. In R. Espejo (Ed.), Opposing Viewpoints. Bioterrorism. Detroit: Greenhaven Press. (Reprinted from testimony of Governor Lowell P. Weicker, President of the Board of Directors, Trust for America's Health, Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions, A Nation Prepared: Strengthening Medical and Public Health Preparedness and Response, healthyamericans.org, 2011)



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