Many states are ill prepared for infectious disease threats, report finds

BMJ 2013; 347 doi: (Published 20 December 2013) Cite this as: BMJ 2013;347:f7652
  1. Michael McCarthy
  1. 1Seattle

Many state public health programs lack the policies and capacity needed for effective prevention and control of outbreaks of infectious diseases, a new report concludes.1

The report, Outbreaks: Protecting Americans from Infectious Diseases, was prepared by the Trust for America’s Health, a non-partisan health policy organization, and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, which focuses on health.

Although the federal government has a substantial role in providing public health services in the United States, the primary responsibility lies with the states, whose public health programs vary widely.

In the report researchers scored the 50 US states and the District of Columbia on whether they …

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