DEPARTMENTS OF LABOR, HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES, AND EDUCATION, AND
RELATED AGENCIES APPROPRIATION BILL, 2008R E P O R T OF THE COMMITTEE ON APPROPRIATIONS
The Committee has included $70,070,000 for fiscal year 2008 for this center. The fiscal year 2007 level was $70,070,000 and the 2008 budget request was $62,952,000.
This Center provides outbreak investigation, infection control and scientific evaluations of zoonotic, vector borne and enteric diseases; and conducts food-borne illness surveillance and investigation. All activities in this Center have been funded at last year’s level.
Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.—The Committee has included funding to continue a public awareness campaign on chronic fatigue syndrome. The Committee also commends the excellent work of the CDC’s CFS research program and its systems biology approach to CFS and understands that it is recognized as a leading program globally.
The Committee awaits reports from CDC regarding how the organizational restructuring will impact the CFS program and how CDC will address emerging evidence concerning human herpesvirus 6A and Epstein-Barr virus and CFS.
Food Safety.—The Committee notes that 76 million Americans suffer from food borne illnesses each year and the CDC coordinates with State and local health officials to respond to the most severe outbreaks. The Committee is concerned by recent E. coli outbreaks linked to spinach and lettuce, and urges the CDC to work with the Food and Drug Administration to prevent future outbreaks.
Morgellons Disease.—The Committee urges the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to study an unexplained skin condition commonly known as Morgellons Disease, which affects over 10,000 individuals with skin lesions, joint pain, and neurological difficulties, among other symptoms. The Committee encourages the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to work as quickly as possible to plan and begin this important research to increase the amount of information available to practitioners and the public.
West Nile Virus.—The Committee is aware of the active role that State laboratories play in testing for west nile virus. This highly seasonal activity is at the forefront of the public’s interaction with local health departments and labs. The Committee strongly supports these efforts and has rejected the proposed cut to these important activities. Preparedness, Detection and Control of Infectious Diseases The Committee has included $156,966,000 for fiscal year 2008 for this Center.
The comparable level for fiscal year 2007 was $155,966,000 and the budget request for fiscal year 2008 was $129,641,000. This Center builds epidemiology and laboratory capacity and provides technical assistance to identify and monitor infectious diseases. With the exception noted below, all activities in this Center are funded at the same level as the 2007 operating plan.
Antimicrobial Resistance.—The Committee is aware that infectious pathogens such as methicillin-resistant Staphylococcous aureus [MRSA] are rapidly gaining new forms of resistance to available antimicrobial drugs. The Committee commends the CDC for its work in tracking trends over time in community acquired MRSA [CA–MRSA] and urges the CDC to continue supporting this surveillance effort.
The Committee further encourages the CDC to strengthen research on CA–MRSA prevention, control and treatment strategies, including the expansion and routinization of it collection of isolates of resistant pathogens from a broad range of sites for analysis by CDC experts. Finally, the Committee encourages the CDC to post timely and pertinent information available to the public through its website.
Emerging Infectious Diseases.—The Committee provides $136,671,000 for all other emerging infectious diseases. This increase of $1,000,000 will provide sufficient resources to expand laboratory capacity, research and support for detecting and characterizing influenza and other infectious diseases.
Prevention Epicenter Program.—The Committee applauds CDC’s support for the Prevention Epicenter Program and has provided sufficient resources to continue this program to address patient safety issues.