Sunday, August 3, 2014

Top CDC official says that due to funding cuts “public health for our nation and the world is put at risk”

Anthony Sanchez, High Containment Laboratory Manager at the Center for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, has provided Etopia News with comments regarding how lack of funding is preventing progress against the spread of the Ebola virus.  Asked by Etopia News about interest in how basic research into the genomics of the Ebola virus could be turned into useful therapies, here’s what he had to say:

I think the interest is tempered by the funding needed to develop countermeasures.  BARDA ( is a government mechanism for funding such work (and CDC programs do submit proposal to them), but at CDC this has not been a major push in the filovirus arena, but some drug testing and pathogenesis studies are being conducted.  Right now funding is down, but perhaps the W. Africa outbreak will lead to increased support for such programs.  I am optimistic that CDC will continue to have the expertise required to have a role in these types of public health initiatives.  At times it comes down to the number of staff you have, the resources at hand, and events (such as the Ebola outbreak) that affect the direction of CDC’s efforts.  Funding for CDC has been significantly impacted, and its ability to respond and do what it does best has been compromised.  In turn, public health for our nation and the world is put at risk.  Best of luck with your research.”

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