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  • Washington Highlights

    AAMC Responds to Rep. Miller-Meeks’ RFI on CDC Reform


    Katherine Cruz, Legislative Analyst
    For Media Inquiries

    On April 21, the AAMC responded to an April 5 request for information (RFI) from House Energy and Commerce Committee member Rep. Mariannette Miller-Meeks, MD, (R-Iowa) on “reforming and improving” the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). This follows the RFI issued by Reps. Richard Hudson (R-N.C.) and Anna Eshoo (D-Calif.), also members of the committee, on the reauthorization of the Pandemic and All-Hazards Preparedness Act (PAHPA) [refer to Washington Highlights, March 17]. 

    In her RFI, Miller-Meeks stated that “the CDC failed to execute its primary mission” in its response to COVID-19 and criticizes the agency’s “sprawling bureaucracy of siloed and uncoordinated administrative, academic, and disease, condition, or issue-specific programs.” She credited the CDC for its ongoing efforts to reform but believes that these efforts are “insufficient to remedy the concerns of [her] constituents and the healthcare community.” The RFI outlined nine areas for comments: mission creep, leadership structure and Moving Forward reorganization, good guidance practices, morbidity and mortality weekly report development, workforce reform, state block grant programs, data and surveillance, CDC authorization, and the CDC Foundation mission and purpose.  

    In response to the RFI, the AAMC’s letter voiced support for the CDC and applauded the agency for reviewing its pandemic response and launching the Moving Forward initiative. It acknowledged the reforms the agency is currently taking and stated that any conclusions about the effectiveness of these changes are premature. The letter pointed out the existing opportunities to address gaps in the CDC’s pandemic response and urged lawmakers to address the agency’s limited authorities outlined in CDC Director Rochelle Walensky’s testimony before the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittees on Health and Oversight and Investigation [refer to Washington Highlights, Feb. 10].  

    The AAMC supports increased investment in the CDC and joined 143 members of the CDC Coalition in a March 22 letter urging Congress to provide at least $11.6 billion for the agency in fiscal year 2024 [refer to Washington Highlights, March 24].