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U.S. Allots $971 Million in Medical Readiness Aid

The U.S. Health and Human Services Department on Monday said it would provide $971 million in medical readiness funding to states and jurisdictions, the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy reported (see GSN, June 13).

The amount includes $619 million for distribution under the Public Health Emergency Preparedness cooperative agreement, a marginal funding boost for the effort overseen by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (see GSN,  Aug. 16, 2011). California is set to receive a $36 million share of the allotment, while states with relatively few inhabitants would receive amounts around $4 million.

An additional $352 million is slated for distribution under the Hospital Preparedness Program, which aims to help states, territories and local jurisdictions ready hospitals to handle an influx of patients following a planned or natural disease outbreak. The initiative received the same level of funding in 2011.

Federal offices have been moving to improve coordination between the two funding initiatives, according to an HHS statement.

"The integration fostered by HPP and PHEP alignment is important in streamlining and strengthening the day-to-day relationships and cross-sector cooperation that are critical to achieving a resilient health system ready to face any health hazard and capable of providing the affordable, high-quality daily care that all Americans deserve," Health and Human Services Assistant Secretary Nicole Lurie said in provided remarks.

Still, the grant efforts would remain distinct as mandated under law, the statement notes (Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy release, July 3).

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