Congress releases estimated cost of PAHPA reauthorization

The Congressional Budget Office released a cost estimate on Thursday of H.R. 307, the Pandemic and All-Hazards Preparedness Reauthorization Act of 2013.

According to information by the Departments of Health and Human Services and Veterans Affairs, the CBO estimates that the implementation of H.R. 307 would cost approximately $11 billion between 2014-2018. That figure assumes appropriation of the authorized amounts.

The Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2012 included funding that totaled approximately $2 billion in fiscal year 2012 for activities that would be similar to the ones authorized by the PAHPA reauthorization. The CBO assumes that amounts appropriated by the Continuing Appropriations Resolution of 2013 for the activities would be similar to 2012 levels.

The passage of the bill would result in spending changes in state and local public health security, the Strategic National Stockpile, public health threats, vaccine tracking and distribution, countermeasure development and review, the Medical Reserve Corps, advanced research of countermeasures, hospital preparedness, the National Disaster Medical System, emergency volunteer registration and the National Committee on Children and Disasters.

The passage of H.R. 307 would also change the terms of Project BioShield contracts, which would lead to a change in direct spending. If the bill was enacted this spring, it would decrease direct spending by $58 million between 2013 and 2018, but it would lead to no net change in direct spending between 2013 and 2023.

The legislation would affect direct spending and pay-as-you-go procedures would apply.

The CBO said enacting the law would not affect revenues.