White House memo recommends biosecurity preparedness, response measures

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Two assistants to the president, John Holdren and Lisa Monaco, issued a memo late last week on biosafety and biosecurity, featuring what steps should be taken at the federal level to improve efforts and measures in these areas.

The memo details the implementation of recommendations that were made in a memo released in August 2014. It also emphasizes the recommendations for departments and agencies involved in research and development of biological sciences and technologies. It also discusses how these measures should be implemented

In a blog post, Holdren and Monaco said the recommendations specify key areas within national security and safety realms with regard to biological preparedness and response. These areas include incident reporting, public accountability, transparency and material stewardship that facilitates control- and inventory-related practice enhancements. They said that through these activities, the federal government and its associated agencies and departments will be able to make commitments to the safety and protection of U.S. citizens and the international community.

The American Society for Microbiology (ASM) said the Federal Experts Security Advisory Panel (FESAP) and the Fast Track Action Committee on Select Agent Regulations (FTAC-SAR) released measured recommendations and implementation directives that address the accountability, safety in research, oversight, and other areas relating to biosafety and biosecurity.

Organizations in this story

ASM(American Society for Microbiology) 1752 N Street Northwest Washington, DC 20036

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