ORR Strategy

The Office of Readiness and Response’s (ORR) FY2023 Strategic Plan proposes bold and ambitious new paths to advance our work and to meet the challenges of tomorrow. A strategic plan is essential to the long-term growth and success of our organization. We are committed to progress and innovation – and this is key to our success and to our ability to meet the challenges of tomorrow. ORR aligns its Strategic Plan to the CDC’s Core Capabilities. The four strategies laid out in this plan, intended to advance the Office and CDC’s capabilities, inform the initiatives we will undertake in the next year – called Key Annual Focus Areas (KAFAs). By addressing the focus areas laid out in the Strategic Plan, we are able to demonstrate our Office’s value to key stakeholders, customers, and partners.

Our Mission:

Advancing the Nation’s preparedness and response for public health emergencies and threats.

Our Vision:

A prepared and resilient Nation able to prevent, mitigate, and respond to all public health threats.

Our Values

We are responsible, reliable public stewards dedicated to openness with each other and those we serve.

We strive to apply science, technical expertise, and creative thought to improve the practice of preparedness and response.

We strive to uphold the highest standards of morals and ethical principles, acting with honesty, respect, and self-awareness.

We aspire to be responsive, efficient, effective, and accurate in all we do.

Health Equity

We are committed to reducing health disparities and achieving equitable health outcomes to improve the nation’s preparedness and response capabilities.

Our Competencies

Planning and Response
We dedicate resources to work ahead of emergencies, apply our knowledge and expertise to help guide emergency response, and learn from past experiences for a better tomorrow.

We endeavor to prevent and mitigate negative impacts from emergencies and threats through strong primary, secondary, and tertiary preparedness efforts.

We collaborate across the public health enterprise to promote strong coordination, cooperation, and communication internally and externally to build a robust and reliable preparedness and response network.

Scientific Research
We collaborate to apply emergency management science analytical and assessment skills across all aspects of preparedness and response to develop strong, evidence-based guidance, provide technical assistance, guide program implementation, and make critical decisions.

Technical Assistance
We share research, knowledge, expertise, training, and resources to help partners make the greatest impact.

Strategy 1:

Modernize and integrate data systems across multidisciplinary public health entities to support real-time information sharing, risk/situational awareness, effective decision making, and emergency operations.

Key Annual Focus Areas

  1. Modernize, innovate, and advance data preparedness and response capabilities.
  2. Continue development of a cloud-based, integrated IT solution that can meet the needs of current and future emergency responses and Emergency Operations Center (EOC) operations.
  3. Prioritize development and enhancement of information technology strategies and tools at the office level required to support ORR’s mission functions, innovation, and data management.
  4. Advance Data Modernization Initiative (DMI) efforts in state, tribal, local, or territorial (STLT) jurisdictions via the Public Health Emergency Preparedness (PHEP) cooperative agreement to support robust STLT surveillance systems, facilitate timely information sharing and support the development of a common operating picture between STLTs and CDC during public health emergencies.
Strategy 3:

Support and advance CDC and STLT health departments’ response capability and lead in ensuring effective federal response and interagency collaboration in public health responses.

Key Annual Focus Areas

  1. Build health equity capabilities and advance Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility (DEIA) efforts within ORR and externally via CDC responses.
  2. Enhance coordination of intragovernmental preparedness and integrate CDC expertise into federal strategic collaborations at both the headquarters and regional levels to ensure effective CDC engagement.
  3. Support the STLT workforce via nationwide expansion of DSLR field staff programs (CEFOs and PFAs) and enhance CDC HQ support for STLTs during public health emergencies (HD LNOs).
  4. Develop tools, processes, and trainings that will pre-identify the start-up and sustainment of all levels and phases during CDC emergency responses.
  5. Operationalize the implementation of the Graduated Response Framework (GRF) across CDC to ensure consistent incident management practices across program, office-led, and agency-wide responses.
Strategy 2:

Enhance the readiness and capacity of the nation’s laboratories and laboratory networks to detect and characterize threats and maintain the highest level of biosecurity and biosafety.

Key Annual Focus Areas

  1. Engage laboratory and cross-sector partnerships to leverage lessons learned from the COVID-19 pandemic to shape future response and partnership activities; and modernize and strengthen a national laboratory system.
  2. Assess how biosafety/biosecurity regulation and standards can be responsive to changing technology while not unduly impacting research.
  3. Enhance oversight of regulated laboratories (import permit and select agent regulations) to be more efficient and provide more effective oversight.
  4. Further develop and implement a polio containment program.
  5. Support the continued advancement of the Laboratory Response Network for Biological and Chemical Threats (LRN-B and LRN-C) in SLT jurisdictions and consider development of a Radiological Laboratory Response Network (LRN-R) as funding permits.
Strategy 4:

Conduct continuous assessment of public health risks and prepare CDC and the Nation to address identified and emerging threats.

Key Annual Focus Areas

  1. Augment public health legal and regulatory frameworks that enable improved preparedness risk mitigation, prevention, and response.
  2. Evaluate STLT jurisdictional operational readiness to respond to public health threats and emergencies and use this information to inform program direction and guide the need for targeted technical assistance.
  3. Collaborate across CDC to implement in-progress and after-action review findings to improve emergency response processes, systems, and operations.
  4. Support PHEP recipients to advance Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility (DEIA) principles, health equity, and community resilience via sharing of best and promising practices across networks, evaluation of existing program requirements and measures, and development of implementable recommendations for workplans.