As the Coronavirus Spreads US Proposes Budget Cuts to Center for Disease Control

Matty-Sways

The proposed budget for the CDC would see a 19% cut in total funds and a refocus of the funds on opioids and influenza.

As the coronavirus continues its spread, now infecting more than 43,000 people globally and causing over 1,000 deaths, the latest budget is proposing cuts to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The CDC, which is tasked with preparing for and responding to such infectious disease outbreaks, would see its budget slashed by 19 percent under the new budget proposal, ArsTechnica reported.

The administration said its intent is to “re-focus CDC’s core mission on preventing and controlling infectious diseases and other emerging public health issues, such as opioids.”

One element of the agency that is on the chopping block is funding for the CDC’s infectious disease response, which would see a 13 percent reduction for programs under the category of “emerging and zoonotic infectious diseases.”

ArsTechnica noted that “zoonotic infectious diseases are those that spread from animals to people, of which the novel coronavirus is one.” Trump’s cuts would include programs that address antibiotic-resistant infections, food safety, and healthcare-associated infections.

The budget also proposes shaving 10 percent from “public health scientific services,” which “includes funding for health statistics, surveillance, epidemiology, and informatics activities.”

The budget proposes cuts to “public health preparedness and response” programs by 3 percent and global health programs by 7 percent.

Further, the administration proposes “cutting roughly $427 million in funding for the chronic disease category—a roughly 34.5 percent drop from enacted 2020 spending.”

It is worth noting that the proposal would boost funding for programs involving influenza planning and response, tick-borne diseases, HIV/AIDS, and the opioid epidemic.

But on the whole, the CDC’s 2021 budget would drop 18.6 percent under the proposal, which comes to $1.27 billion less than the agency received from enacted 2020 spending.

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