As President Obama embarks on his second term, the American Public Health Association (APHA) is urging him to press forward on four major issues that carry tremendous public health implications: gun violence prevention, climate change, public health funding and implementation of the Affordable Care Act.
In the 10th annual Ready or Not? Protecting the Public from Diseases, Disasters, and Bioterrorism report, 35 states and Washington, D.C. scored a six or lower on 10 key indicators of public health preparedness. The report found that while there has been significant progress toward improving public health preparedness over the past 10 years, particularly in core capabilities, there continue to be persistent gaps in the country's ability to respond to health emergencies, ranging from bioterrorist threats to serious disease outbreaks to extreme weather events.
The American Public Health Association (APHA) says short-term savings from drastic cuts to critical health programs proposed by a House subcommittee will be outweighed by long-term medical and human costs.
Budget cutbacks at all levels of government are affecting the nation's ability to prepare for and respond to disasters, according to the Trust for America's Health, a non-profit, non-partisan organization dedicated to making disease prevention a national priority.