HHS: National Public Health Strategy to Prevent & Control Vector-Borne Diseases
In a Health and Human Services press release on 02.06.2024, the HHS Releases the National Public Health Strategy to Prevent and Control Vector-Borne Diseases in People. The Strategy incorporates recommendations from the now sunset Working Group. The strategy aims to address the growing public health challenges related to diseases spread by vectors such as mosquitoes, ticks, fleas, and lice. This strategy was developed over a four-year period involving collaboration among 17 federal departments and agencies, as directed by the 2019 Kay Hagan Tick Act. Read the Strategy here.
The press release highlights the significant impact of vector-borne diseases, which include well-known illnesses like Lyme disease, Zika virus, West Nile virus, and others. It notes that reported cases of these diseases have doubled over the last two decades, attributing this increase to factors like shifting land use patterns, global travel and trade, and climate change. Despite this growing threat, there is currently only one vaccine available for nearly 20 domestic vector-borne diseases.
The strategy focuses on identifying challenges and opportunities for prevention and control of vector-borne diseases, developing diagnostics, drugs, and treatments for these diseases, improving tools, methods, and guidance for diagnosis, prevention, and control, and disseminating public health tools and programs to prevent, detect, diagnose, and respond to threats. Overall, the VBD National Strategy represents a coordinated effort by multiple federal agencies to address the growing threat of vector-borne diseases and protect public health in the United States.
NOTE: LDA President Pat Smith was a Member of the HHS Tick-Bone Working group for 4 years. See HHS Tick-Borne Disease Working Group 2020 Report to Congress, pages 18-27, for Section on the Strategy:
Tick-Borne Disease Working Group 202 Report to Congress PDF
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