Ensuring States, Localities, and Territories Are Ready to Fight Zika
To make sure the latest science is available for state, local, and territorial health departments during a public health emergency, CDC activates the State Coordination Task Force (SCTF) within the Emergency Operations Center. The task force has been instrumental during the Zika response in helping communities prepare for and respond to the outbreak. They have facilitated the development of key guidance documents and provided recommendations that jurisdictions can adapt as they develop state-specific Zika action plans. In areas affected by Zika, the task force worked with national partners to coordinate staffing support with expertise in health education, laboratory, and epidemiology; conduct needs assessments; provide training; and develop resource guides.
The task force established three regional country desks to triage requests for information or assistance from deployed staff and external partners: the Continental United States Desk, the Pacific Islands Desk, and the Caribbean Islands Desk. They have conducted numerous national calls and more than 115 recurring regional desk calls with select jurisdictions identified as high risk for Zika transmission or experiencing a high volume of travelers from affected areas. During the calls, the task force provides situational awareness, updates on Zika response activities, and CDC guidance and recommendations.