The increasing interconnectedness of global economies and dramatic proliferation of international travel have underscored how the public health concerns of one country are intimately tied to the public health concerns of all countries. Therefore, to enhance global biological security, BEP assists foreign scientists to develop and improve capabilities to prevent, detect, and respond to infectious disease outbreaks, whether they are naturally-occurring or the result of misuse or intentional release.
Methods employed to strengthen disease detection and control include, but are not limited to:
- Field Epidemiology (and Laboratory) Training Program: Help countries develop and establish dynamic public health strategies to improve and strengthen their public health system and infrastructure. These programs include the possibility of adding a laboratory training component to the applied epidemiology training program with the goal of using laboratory data to improve surveillance and outbreak response, implemented though the CDC FE(L)TP program
- Disease Diagnosis: Provide equipment and training for the detection of several infectious diseases that are endemic to BEP priority countries, including tuberculosis, highly pathogenic influenza, brucellosis, and others
- Surveillance and Capacity Building: Provide training to build capacity for disease surveillance on a number of infectious diseases, including FMD, highly pathogenic influenza, and other emerging zoonotic diseases
Building capacity within countries to quickly detect and respond to an outbreak as soon as it occurs is crucial to the overall BEP mission of improving biological security. Furthermore, these types of engagement provide a mechanism to work with governments to build public health capacity, while reducing the chances that a disease outbreak, whether naturally occurring or intentional, expands to the United States.