$100 Million Will Help States With Smallpox Vaccinations
The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has released $100 million to the states to help them prepare for a possible smallpox attack and strengthen the public health infrastructure.
The money from HHS’ Centers and Disease Control and Prevention is in addition to the $1.1 billion in fiscal year 2002 funds sent to states last year and the $1.4 billion in fiscal year 2003 money.
In March, the department announced that 20 percent ($280 million) of the $1.4 billion to be provided to states this year was available immediately to help them enhance preparations against terrorism or other public health emergencies, including smallpox vaccination for selected health workers and emergency responders.
The remaining 80 percent will be released once states submit and HHS reviews work plans outlining their public health and hospital preparedness activities.
Overall, HHS is spending $3.5 billion this year for bioterrorism preparedness, including research into potential bioterror disease agents and potential treatments and vaccines. The fiscal year 2003 funding is up from about $1.8 billion for such activities in 2002.