CDC’s Global Impact: Responding to COVID-19 Around the World
CDC global health experts have worked tirelessly with partners and public health officials to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic by leveraging and adapting longstanding investments, systems, and programs for the global COVID-19 response. CDC also simultaneously implemented innovative strategies to mitigate the impact of COVID-19 on flagship global health programs.
In Zambia, CDC has served as the principal advisor to the Chief of Mission on workplace safety and development of guidance and procedures related to COVID-19. Early in the pandemic, before testing was available at the Embassy, CDC staff supported testing of Embassy staff using PEPFAR infrastructure. CDC staff also conducted contact tracing for over 300 Embassy staff and families who were exposed to SARS-CoV-2 (the virus that causes COVID-19). CDC supports the Chief of Mission with town halls for staff and live Facebook sessions for American citizens to address concerns about COVID-19.
Haiti is experiencing multiple concurrent crises, including COVID-19, political unrest, and, in 2021, a devastating earthquake. To expand access to COVID-19 diagnosis, CDC developed additional testing sites, building on a model used for HIV and TB programs. Because of this CDC support to the Ministry of Public Health and Population (MSPP), citizens can now get tested for COVID-19 at pharmacies, private sector labs, and international airports. CDC has also facilitated the delivery of USG-donated vaccines and continues to support MSPP to increase vaccine uptake.
CDC’s ability to leverage core capacities overseas for the global COVID-19 response is built on longstanding investments in surveillance, laboratory networks, emergency management, and workforce development.
CDC supported over 18 national laboratories in high-containment operations to enhance biosafety and biosecurity during COVID-19.
CDC hosted emergency response trainings and workshops for over 1,500 participants in 60+ countries.
98% of CDC’s Field Epidemiology Training Program (FETP) residents or graduates have supported global COVID-19 epidemiologic investigations, data collection and analysis, and information dissemination.
Since the start of the pandemic, participants and alumni of the Stop Transmission of Polio program (STOP) have been supporting national COVID-19 responses in 47 countries, with 119,000 public health workers trained by STOP participants.
CDC’s PEPFAR-supported investments have been critical to COVID-19 diagnosis and surveillance, with nearly 1,450 facilities supported with molecular testing capacity for SARS-CoV-2, HIV, and TB.
Two CDC global divisions alone contributed over 1,650,000 person-hours to the global COVID-19 response, including over 350,000 person-hours from in-country staff around the world.
CDC has worked quickly to put Nigeria on the path to HIV epidemic control, rolling out an HIV anti-retroviral therapy surge in the nine Nigerian states with the largest numbers of people with HIV not receiving treatment. The first 18-months of the Nigeria HIV treatment surge resulted in an eight-fold increase in the weekly number of newly identified people with HIV who started treatment in the nine focal states, even amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. Based on this initial success, CDC worked with partners to expand efforts to nine additional states. The ongoing Nigeria treatment surge has led to a near tripling of people receiving HIV treatment in 18 states, from 454,000 in 2019 to 1,239,000 in 2022.
CDC’s PEPFAR implementing partners established 1,000 COVID-19 vaccination points in HIV clinics and trained 1,000 vaccinators.