The Government Accountability Office (GAO) released a new report outlining the state of the National Health Emergency, acknowledging the efforts of various agencies thus far, and providing new recommendations with the knowledge that many of these same agencies will face additional strain from the coming influenza and hurricane seasons.
- Medical Supply Chain: The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), in coordination with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) take on a more central role in supply chain logistics, work with stakeholders to mitigate potential shortages, and develop a better system to track requests and fulfilment processing.
- Vaccines and Therapeutics: HHS should work with the Department of Defense (DOD) to develop and publish a national plan and specific timeline for vaccine deployment and administration.
- Data: the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) needs to work with stakeholders to ensure completeness of demographic data and ensure its ability to assess long-term health outcomes. The CDC needs to develop a strategy to more fully capture nursing home data retroactive to January 1, 2020.
- Economic Impact Payments: the Department of the Treasury and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) update and refine the process of identifying eligible recipients who have not received economic impact payments (EIPs) and work to better target and communicate with them.
- Coronavirus Relief Fund: The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) should work with the Department of Treasury to publish audit guidance regarding the Coronavirus Relief Fund.
- Guidance for K-12 Schools: CDC must publish cogent, clear, and internally-consistent guidance relating to school opening status.
- Tracking Contract Obligations: the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and DOD must enhance visibility on contract actions related to disaster relief efforts.
- Cybersecurity: HHS should expedite implementation of GAO's prior recommendations regarding intra-agency weaknesses.