Bush unveils pandemic plan
New government pandemic flu site
Don't have much time to dig into it right now so I'll just highlight what caught my eye. One notable quote:
Our country has been given fair warning of this danger to our homeland and time to prepare.(Let's see him stick to that one, should a pandemic happen this year).
Overall, it looks like he's emphasizing surveillance, training/expanding medical personnel, vaccine/antiviral stockpiles (including more money to have an immediate stockpile of the H5N1 vaccine already working its way through clinical trials), developing new vaccine technologies, and emergency response planning.
I'm unclear as to whether this initiative will apply to just influenza, or all disease:
To strengthen domestic surveillance, my administration is launching the National Biosurveillance Initiative. This initiative will help us rapidly detect, quantify and respond to outbreaks of disease in humans and animals, and deliver information quickly to state and local and national and international public health officials.And of course, it wouldn't be Bush without a mention of one of his pet causes:
I'm also asking Congress to remove one of the greatest obstacles to domestic vaccine production: the growing burden of litigation.
Finally--the price tag for all this?
So to meet all our goals, I'm requesting a total of $7.1 billion in emergency funding from the United States Congress.Just where is all this money coming from? Guess we'd better make those Medicare cuts a little bit deeper.
Edited to add: Revere at Effect Measure also has a discussion of Bush's speech today.