FY 2021 Annual Performance Plan and Report - Goal 2 Objective 4

Fiscal Year 2021
Released March, 2020

Goal 2. Objective 4: Prepare for and respond to public health emergencies

The health of Americans during public health emergencies and other incidents depends on the effectiveness of preparedness, mitigation, response and recovery efforts. Threats in an increasingly interconnected, complex, and dangerous world include naturally emerging infectious diseases; frequent and severe weather events; state and non-state actors that have access to chemical, biological, radiological, or nuclear agents; non-state actors who commit acts of mass violence; and cyber-attacks.

HHS is engaged in the research, development, and procurement of medical countermeasures, which include vaccines, drugs, therapies, and diagnostic tools. HHS collaborates with others to ensure that the appropriate number of safe and effective medical countermeasures are developed and stockpiled and can be easily distributed to save lives during an incident. HHS also invests in building the capacity of other countries to detect, prevent, and respond to incidents.

The Office of the Secretary leads this objective. The following divisions are responsible for implementing programs under this strategic objective: ACF, ACL, ASA, ASPA, ASPR, CDC, CMS, FDA, HRSA, IHS, IOS, NIH, OASH, OCR, OGA, and SAMHSA. In consultation with OMB, HHS has determined that performance toward this objective is progressing.  The narrative below provides a brief summary of progress made and achievements or challenges, as well as plans to improve or maintain performance.

Objective 2.4 Table of Related Performance Measures

Maintain the percentage of CDC-funded Public Health Emergency Preparedness (PHEP) state and local public health agencies that can convene, within 60 minutes of notification, a team of trained staff that can make decisions about appropriate response and interaction with partners (Lead Agency - CDC; Measure ID - 13.5.3) 27

  FY 2014 FY 2015 FY 2016 FY 2017 FY 2018 FY 2019 FY 2020 FY 2021
Target 95% 95% 96% 96% 96% 96% 96% 96%
Result 96% 100% 95% 85% 02/28/20 02/28/21 02/28/22 02/28/23
Status Target Exceeded Target Exceeded Target Not Met Target Not Met Pending Pending Pending Pending

Public health agencies must be able to rapidly convene key management staff (within 60 minutes of notification) to appropriately respond to an emergency. This effort includes the integration of information and the prioritization of resources to ensure timely and effective coordination within the public health agency and key response partners.

In FY 2016, 95 percent of PHEP-funded public health agencies convened trained staff within 60 minutes of notification to make decisions regarding partner engagement and incident response. This is slightly below the target of 96 percent. The result is mostly due to two PHEP-funded public health agencies that provided data based on responding to real incidents (hurricane and Zika responses), which resulted in longer assembly times from staff.

In FY 2017, the PHEP program transitioned to the Operational Readiness Review, which caused a change in the data collection process and may have affected FY 2017 performance. In that year, 85 percent of PHEP-funded public health agencies convened trained staff within 60 minutes of notification to make decisions regarding partner engagement and incident response, which is below the target of 96 percent. The new process and system requires recipients to provide detailed records to a PHEP specialist for review to determine if the staff assembly met all requirements. The program will provide additional training and technical assistance to recipients during this transition to improve results and achieve future targets.

Increase the number of new licensed medical countermeasures within Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) (Lead Agency - ASPR; Measure ID - 2.4.13a)

  FY 2014 FY 2015 FY 2016 FY 2017 FY 2018 FY 2019 FY 2020 FY 2021
Target N/A N/A 3 3 3 3 3 3
Result N/A N/A 3 5 9 7 12/31/20 12/31/20
Status N/A N/A Target Met Target Exceeded Target Exceeded Pending Pending Pending

Medical countermeasures (MCMs) are federally regulated products used during a public health emergency. Examples of emergencies include chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear agents, pandemic influenza, and emerging (or re-emerging) infectious diseases. Through the BARDA program, ASPR develops and makes available MCMs to prepare for and respond to national emergencies. Each of APSR's products is designed to address a particular gap in our ability to address these emergencies. In addition, ASPR oversees purchases of MCMs for storage in the Strategic National Stockpile.

ASPR's approach to advanced research and development has a proven track record of success due to continuous collaboration with NIH, CDC, FDA, and the Departments of Defense, Homeland Security, Veteran Affairs, and Agriculture. HHS sets research and development priorities under a five-year strategy and implementation plan. In FY 2019, BARDA completed the licensure process for a Zika vaccine and took steps to address the threat of the Ebola virus spreading within the United States. In FY 2020 and FY 2021, ASPR will continue to support the development of critical MCMs to increase national preparedness.

27 CDC results are based on jurisdictions (N) that allocated PHEP funding for pulsed-field gel electrophoresis E.coli activities.

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