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Scientific American Examines Impact Of Government Shutdown On Health, Science Activities

Following approval of “a final deal to keep the [U.S.] government running until January 15, researchers across the nation say their work — some of it already compromised by the budget sequestration — will suffer lasting damage as a result of the 16-day shutdown,” Scientific American reports. “Health surveillance may take some time to recover,” the magazine writes, noting, “The shutdown forced the agency to furlough 8,754 people — some two thirds of its staff — weakening the agency’s ability to monitor flu and support state and local monitoring efforts.”

“Impacts of the shutdown also threaten to skitter across national borders,” Scientific American writes, noting, “The closure left many federally funded scientists unable to attend international meetings, says Caroline Smith DeWaal, director of the food safety program for the Center for Science in the Public Interest.” The magazine adds, “A Brussels-based meeting with the Trans Atlantic Consumer Dialogue, which brings consumer organizations from both sides of the Atlantic together to discuss food and intellectual property, was slated for the end of the month, but no U.S. representatives are committed to being there, she says” (Maron, 10/16).