Mar 6, 2024

Examining the White House’s Role in Pandemic Preparedness and Response | Mar. 6

‘WASHINGTON — Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Pandemic Chairman Brad Wenstrup (R-Ohio) will hold a hearing titled “Examining the White House’s Role in Pandemic Preparedness and Response” to discuss the Office of Pandemic Preparedness and Response Policy’s (OPPR) role in responding to and preventing future pandemics. The OPPR was established in 2023 to lead, coordinate, and implement actions related to potential biological threats and possible significant public health-related disruptions in the United States.

‘Four years prior to the creation of OPPR, Congress directed the Executive Branch to develop a national biodefense strategy and implementation plan. The Trump Administration released the inaugural strategy in 2018, which was later updated by the Biden Administration in 2022 following the COVID-19 pandemic. America’s comprehensive National Biodefense Strategy and Implementation Plan overlaps significantly with OPPR’s core functions, potentially leading to needless redundancies within the federal government. This hearing will provide Members the opportunity to assess the effectiveness of the newly established OPPR within the existing biodefense system and evaluate the White House’s role in pandemic preparedness and response.

‘“In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the White House created a new office to advise the President on pandemic preparedness and response policy. OPPR, in theory, adds an additional layer of protection and prevention should a future public health crisis arise. While OPPR is now a permanent component of the White House’s internal operations, many questions still remain about its role and authority in our country’s biodefense system. Next week’s hearing with the Director of OPPR will help answer these questions and shine light on this newly established office. The Select Subcommittee looks forward to an on-topic, forward-looking discussion,” said Chairman Wenstrup.’

*The opinions expressed by the hosts and guests in this show are not necessarily the views of Children’s Health Defense.

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