HHS releases MCM strategy and implementation plans

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services recently released its strategy paper and implementation plan for the Public Health Emergency Medical Countermeasure Enterprise.

The PHEMCE is the coordinating body used by federal agencies to protect the civilian population from the potentially adverse effects of chemical, biological, radiological, or nuclear agents and emerging infectious diseases through the use of medical countermeasures.

The first federal MCM strategy and implementation plan was introduced in 2007. The updated strategy accounts for gains made through continued funding authorized by Project BioShield and expands efforts to improve the national capability to respond to a major public health threat.

The 2012 HHS PHEMCE Strategy seeks to address potential gaps in current MCM plans to protect the U.S. population from CBRN weapons, including those found in regulatory pathways. It also lays out plans to develop and manufacture MCMs and the logistical support needed to distribute them.

The 2012 HHS PHEMCE Implementation Plan describes the HHS and interagency activities and programs to be undertaken over the next five years to increase MCM preparedness.

Together, the strategy and implementation plan are to be used for both near- and long-term development of MCMs and the means for their distribution.