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Strategic Partnerships

Preparing for public health emergencies require coordinated efforts that involve every level of government, the public and private sector, non-governmental organizations, and individuals. The stockpile has spent many years building partnerships and bridging gaps to improve the nation’s ability to respond. The Community Resilience Activity staff strategically collaborates with partners to support optimal distribution of critical medicines and supplies (medical countermeasures) during public health emergencies.

Partnerships with private industry and other federal agencies ensure every step of the medical supply chain—from manufacture to delivery—is coordinated. One example of this type of partnership is the ongoing collaboration between the stockpile and industry trade organizations to develop solutions and strategies for issues like product shortages and substitutions.  We use our relationships in time of crisis and shortage to informally advise industry on the best way to distribute material that will help the overall response.

During the Ebola and Zika outbreaks, the stockpile stepped outside of its traditional role to support CDC’s agency-wide responses in a new way.


Partnering in Ebola Response

Ebola kit preparation

CDC monitored local supplies of personal protective equipment and encouraged hospitals, public health, and healthcare coalitions to develop sharing plans during a time when supply was not meeting demand. Additionally, the stockpile:

  • Coordinated with commercial supply chain partners to identify gaps in inventory at U.S. hospitals designated as Ebola Treatment Centers.
  • Prioritized hospitals for rapid delivery of key products such as:
    • Gowns
    • Coveralls
    • Aprons
    • Boot covers
    • Gloves
    • Face shields
    • Disinfecting wipes
  • Established a small supply of Ebola-specific equipment to meet urgent, short-term needs.

Read more about CDC’s increased supply of Ebola-specific personal protective equipment for U.S. Hospitals.


Partnering in Zika Response

Zika Kit Preparation

Rather than providing medicines and supplies on hand, stockpile responders were tapped for their specialized expertise and knowledge of medical logistics and supply chain operations in support of these responses.  The stockpile:

  • Continued close collaboration with suppliers and other federal and state agents to ensure awareness of the supply chain status of products needed for prevention measures
  • Collaborated with the CDC Foundation (due to limited government funds) to help obtain Zika prevention products
  • Assembled and delivered approximately 31,000 Zika Prevention Kits
  • Sprayed more than 9,000 homes, hospitals, schools and churches to prevent the spread of the virus in U.S. territories and island jurisdictions
  • Deployed 22 stockpile personnel to U.S. territories, including Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Guam, and the Republic of the Marshall Islands

Learn more about the Stockpile’s Unique Role in Zika Prevention