Lessons Learned and Looking Forward: What’s Next for the Center for Global Health in 2021?
A typical mobile vehicle fitted with PA system to provide COVID-19 health information in one of the villages in Pangani District, Tanga Region, Tanzania, 2020.
Credit: Amref Health Africa Tanzania
Among the most critical lessons learned from the COVID-19 pandemic is that national security requires health security. While we know that progress in global health security preparedness and response is possible, the COVID-19 pandemic calls us to take stock of the work that remains. Two-thirds of all countries are not prepared to respond to outbreaks and other public health emergencies. The global shift towards urbanization is bringing people closer together in often crowded cities, increasing opportunities for infectious diseases to be introduced and outbreaks to affect large numbers of people and spread quickly. In addition, disease outbreaks, such as the recent Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, can occur in politically unstable regions, creating special control challenges. The Center for Global Health is focused on improving the health, safety, and security of Americans while reducing morbidity and mortality worldwide. Looking forward, CGH will:
- Strengthen our U.S. based rapid response workforce with our Global Rapid Response Team and continue to expand our global disease detection and 24/7 monitoring and analysis capacities.
- Strengthen global preparedness by supporting the development and sustainability of public health infrastructure through the National Public Health Institute program. Creating National Public Health Institutes overseas brings together professionals, disease monitoring, and laboratories so that countries detect and diagnose diseases with a ready, trained workforce.
- Provide leadership for CDC’s Global COVID-19 response efforts by building on relationships with country partners to implement key strategies including vaccine roll out, distribution, and surveillance.
- Build preparedness and response capacity and collaboration from global and domestic efforts across the agency to prepare for the next global health emergency
- Conduct scientific research of global health significance and ensure our scientific research is translated into programs to achieve health equity and meet our public health goals across the global health portfolio.
- Intensify, innovate, sustain, and accelerate known, proven interventions and advance the science base to develop the public health tools to continue the fight against HIV, TB, malaria, neglected tropical diseases, and vaccine-preventable diseases, including measles and polio.
- Support efforts to extend CDC’s global reach to ensure coverage in all vulnerable regions of the world, including the establishment of regional platforms to increase efficacy of disease control and prevention efforts.