Investments in Pandemic Preparedness Pay Off, but are Threatened by Cuts in Federal Funding

January 15, 2009

      "States have made important progress toward preparing for their unique roles in combating an influenza pandemic but have much more to do," according to a report submitted today to the Homeland Security Council.

       Federal funding for state and territorial pandemic preparedness ended in August 2008 and is not included in the FY09 budget. In addition, overall federal funding for preparedness activities has been cut by 25 percent since 2005.

       "States are not in a position to replace the federal funding," said Dr. Judy Monroe, ASTHO President and Indiana State Health Commissioner. "Across the board, states and their health departments are experiencing devastating budget cuts. Reductions in federal preparedness funding for pandemics or other hazards will not only prevent additional advances, but will erode the ability of current programs to protect our citizens."

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