12.14.11

Senator Burr’s Statement on the Passage of the Pandemic and All-Hazards Preparedness Act Reauthorization of 2011 (PAHPA) out of the HELP Committee

Washington, D.C. - Today, U.S. Senator Richard Burr (R-NC) issued the following statement on the passage of the Pandemic and All-Hazards Preparedness Act Reauthorization of 2011 (PAHPA) out of the Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee. With reports that Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula is actively trying to produce toxic weapons, countries like Iran seeking weapons-grade nuclear technology, and potential homegrown terror threats, this bill is absolutely vital to America's national security.

"The American people must be protected if an attack occurs, and I am proud that the Senate HELP Committee has voted to strengthen our ability to respond to an attack or emergency by reauthorizing the Pandemic and All-Hazards Preparedness Act," Senator Burr said. "Since Congress passed the original PAHPA law in 2006, we have made great strides in getting our nation better prepared to handle a bioterror attack or public health emergency, but there is still much work to be done.

"This bill will enhance existing programs through improvements based on the lessons we have learned over the past five years, including from the H1N1 pandemic and disasters at home and abroad. In addition, the bill will strengthen medical countermeasures by ensuring that the FDA has the tools it needs to respond to modern day threats."

This important bipartisan legislation was introduced by Senators Burr (R-NC), Harkin (D-IA), Enzi (R-WY), and Casey (D-PA) to strengthen and enhance our nation's ability to prepare for and respond to all-hazards that may confront us, whether naturally occurring, like an influenza pandemic, or a deliberate bioterrorism attack. You can read more about it in this press release.