Public health emergencies are here to stay. That’s the word this week from CDC Director Rochelle Walensky as America appears to be winding down its COVID-19 public emergency, but the next one could be coming, Walensky warned America.
Of course it is. The medical emergency is now a new tool in the political arsenal of American Democrats and now they realize how effective of a political too they are, they won’t be going anywhere, anytime soon. Public health emergencies empower politicians to push the limits of the Constitution in the name of health. Last year, Democrat governors took full advantage of their newfound pandemic powers to exert unprecedented control over their populations.
“Experts had warned for years that a pandemic of this scale was coming, and we must expect additional diseases to emerge. We need to ask ourselves, “Are we ready?” We must have a strong infrastructure that can identify and detect outbreaks at their source, and can take quick action before diseases take hold,” Walensky said. “Over the last 12 years, the United States has faced four significant emerging infectious disease threats: the H1N1 influenza pandemic, Ebola, Zika, and COVID-19. We also confronted a drug overdose epidemic, with nearly 500,000 people dying from an opioid related overdose between 1999 and 2019. This increase continued into 2020 and appeared to accelerate during the COVID-19 pandemic.”
Walensky said COVID-19 showed America it needs to be ready for the next unknown. That means investing billions of dollars into preparing for the next pandemic which may come…it may not.
“These experiences show that public health emergencies are here to stay. Each of those threats demanded a rapid and unique response, but none resulted in a sustained public health improvement,” Walensky said, “Longterm investments in flexible infrastructure will save lives and avert economic losses caused by public health emergencies and chronic public health problems. The fiscal year 2022 request makes initial investments to continue public health data modernization, build the public health workforce, enhance global health security, and strengthen our immunization infrastructure.”
The most imminent public health threat on the horizon of the CDC is climate risk and health equity.
“In addition, we are requesting funds to help states and communities be climate ready and prepare to confront new health risks, such as those associated with vector-borne diseases. The fiscal 2022 budget request also makes specific investments in programs that work to improve health equity,” she said.