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Press Release

For Immediate Release
November 14, 2003
Contact: CDC Media Relations
(404) 639-3286

CDC Releases First State of CDC Report

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Director Dr. Julie Gerberding released the first State of CDC report today at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. The report chronicles the agency’s accomplishments during Fiscal Year 2003 and provides a snapshot of plans to meet future public health challenges.

“During this past year, the public health community faced a series of challenges, both domestically and internationally,” Dr. Gerberding said in releasing the report. “Month by month, CDC consistently provided a strong return on the American people’s investment, acting swiftly and decisively to control outbreaks like SARS, Monkeypox, and West Nile Virus while carrying out sound, science-based programs to reduce illness and death from conditions like heart disease and obesity.”

The report contains details about how CDC invested $7 billion in public health programs, both at home and abroad, that impact people’s lives each day. Highlights of the fiscal year 2003 report include:

October 2002 – CDC staff investigates outbreaks of Norwalk virus, which sicken thousands on cruise ships.

November 2002 – CDC teams with other federal agencies and businesses to ease burden of diabetes in the workplace.

December 2002 – President George Bush announces nation’s smallpox preparedness plan.

CDC reports new state data showing diabetes and obesity still on the rise.

January 2003 - CDC begins shipping smallpox vaccination to states. President Bush announces multi-billion dollar Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief in State of the Union address. CDC releases first ever population-based estimates of autism in the United States.

February 2003 – CDC releases data showing stroke is a leading cause of death in the United States. Also releases report showing deaths related to pregnancy remain substantially higher among blacks than whites.

March 2003 – CDC issues health alert notice about atypical pneumonia (later called SARS) circulating in parts of Asia and Canada. Lab analysis suggests new coronavirus may cause SARS.

April 2003 – CDC labs sequences entire genome of SARS coronavirus. CDC dedicates new Emergency Operations Center that allows for a more efficient response to infectious disease outbreaks and other public health emergencies. CDC also launches a new initiative to increase HIV testing and enhance prevention for people with HIV infection.

May 2003 – CDC’s virtual reality lab advances job injury prevention. CDC awards more than $27 million to state diabetes control programs.

June 2003 – CDC releases new edition of The Yellow Book – gold standard for international travel information. CDC scientists confirm the first outbreak of monkeypox in the Western Hemisphere.

July 2003 – CDC and partners launch autism awareness initiative. CDC confirms first human case of West Nile Virus in 2003.

August 2003 – CDC and partners report that investigational screening tests are effective in identifying West Nile Virus in blood donations. CDC reports overall high vaccination rates in school-age children.

September 2003 – CDC and partners unveil a new campaign to promote proper antibiotic use. CDC and New York City Health Department announce World Trade Center Health Registry. HHS awards $13.7 million for community programs to address diabetes, asthma, and obesity.

Also highlighted in the report are details about what CDC is doing through its “Futures Initiative” to meet anticipated and unexpected public health challenges in the future. “This initiative is one of my top priorities,” said Dr. Gerberding. “We soon will be implementing new ways of doing business, new processes and new directions for the agency to ensure that CDC continues to achieve the best possible science and best possible service to our customers.”

For a full copy of the report please go to the CDC website at

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CDC protects people's health and safety by preventing and controlling diseases and injuries; enhances health decisions by providing credible information on critical health issues; and promotes healthy living through strong partnerships with local, national, and international organizations.


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This page last updated November 14,  2003

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