Budgeting for Biodefense

Picture of the H1N1 influenza virus - biodefense

On the centennial anniversary of the Spanish Flu epidemic of 1918, U.S. vulnerability to intentional, accidental and naturally occurring disease outbreaks continues to increase.  Defending against biological threats is explored in this report by the Blue Ribbon Study Panel on Biodefense.

Budget Reform for Biodefense: Integrated Budget Needed to Increase Return on Investment” discusses the need for coordinated biodefense efforts between federal departments and agencies all subsumed under one biodefense budget.

Multiple federal departments and agencies currently maintain independent biodefense strategies for which funding is requested individually. Consequently, overall governmental spending on biodefense is not evaluated or considered for future appropriations decisions.

The National Defense Authorization Act of 2017 (PL No. 114-328) establishes as law the development of a federal strategy for biodefense.  The authors of this report suggest that achieving success in the mandated National Biodefense Strategy will require an integrated budget to facilitate coordination between departments addressing biodefense; establish performance metrics to measure efficacy of strategies; and, support decision makers toward making sound financial investments and eliminating duplicity of effort and resources.

This report recommends an integrated biodefense budget to address the increasing need for effective national biodefense strategies, and describes governmental implementation and management of such an effort.

Unregistered users can read the report here, as well as the press release. The HSDL offers several resources, for learning more about Featured Topics in Homeland Pandemics and Epidemics. View the HSDL Timeline to see when epidemics have impacted national security and safety.