This report provides an overview of the U.S. role in the global response to the H1N1 influenza outbreak. The report highlights efforts by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the U.S. Agency for International Development and summarizes potential issues for future consideration.
U.S. Agency for International Development
In a speech at the Brookings Institution titled “Diplomacy and Development in the 21st Century: A Conversation with Senator John Kerry,” Senator Kerry summarized his views on the current state of U.S. diplomatic and development institutions and suggested a number of reforms that would “strengthen our civilian institutions to adequately address the challenges of the 21st century.” Some of these reforms include:
- Increasing resources, personnel and training;
- Improving coordination of U.S. foreign assistance programs;
- Clarifying the policies and goals of U.S. foreign assistance;
- Reauthorizing the Foreign Assistance Act; and
- Rebalancing the decision-making process between Washington and the field.
Senator Kerry also announced that he would be “introducing two pieces of legislation: a Foreign Affairs Authorization Act that will authorize the State Department and related accounts, and an initial foreign aid reform bill.”
Acting Administrator of the U.S. Agency for International Development testifies on the FY 2010 budget request
Alonzo Fullgham, Acting Administrator and Chief Operating Officer of the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), testified before the House Appropriations Subcommittee on State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs to discuss the FY 2010 budget request.
Secretary of State Clinton testifies before a Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on the FY 2010 budget for the Department of State
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton testified before the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs on the FY 2010 budget for the Department of State. In her remarks, Secretary Clinton discussed food security, global health issues, and USAID staffing levels.
Secretary of State Clinton testifies before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Foreign Policy Priorities in the FY 2010 International Affairs Budget
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton testified before the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations on the FY 2010 budget for the Department of State. In her remarks, Secretary Clinton discussed global health issues and USAID staffing levels.
Deputy Secretary of State Jack Lew testified before the House Foreign Affair Committee on the FY 2010 International Affairs. During his testimony, Deputy Secretary Lew discussed the “principles and priorities that underlie President Obama’s international affairs budget request for 2010” including “five smart power funding objectives.” These objectives include:
1) Building civilian capacity at the Department of State and USAID;
2) Promoting long-term development and human security by addressing economic development and good governance, food security, education needs, global climate change, and global health;
3) Enhancing strategic bilateral and multilateral partnerships;
4) Strengthening global security capabilities; and
5) Maintaining the resources to respond to humanitarian needs.
The proposed bill requires “the use of long-term strategies for United States national security, diplomacy, and foreign assistance and the full use of performance-based budgeting for foreign assistance programs, projects, and activities.”
President Obama submitted the FY 2010 budget to Congress including $53.9 billion for the Department of State and other international programs.
Among other things, the bill authorizes the Secretary of the Treasury to contribute $3.7 billion to the International Development Association for the 15th replenishment of resources and an additional $356 million “to the International Development Association for the purpose of funding debt relief under the Multilateral Debt Relief Initiative.” The bill also directs the Secretary of the Treasury to “seek to ensure that multilateral development banks rigorously evaluate the development impact of selected bank projects, programs, and financing operations.” Finally, the bill requires the Secretary of the Treasury to conduct a study in coordination with the Secretary of State, the Administrator of the United States Agency for International Development, and other Federal agencies “on the respective roles each agency plays in the formulation of United States policy concerning the development policy, programs, and activities of the World Bank Group.”
During a speech at the Plenary Session of the Foreign Affairs Day, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton discussed some of the priorities for the State Department and USAID including agricultural productivity and a reduction on USAID contracting. More specifically, Secretary Clinton stated that she wants “to move more of AID’s work back inside AID instead of having it out with contractors because we are wasting an enormous amount of money. Fifty cents on the dollar doesnâ€™t even get into the pipeline to actually be delivered. We only have four engineers in all of USAID now. And I think itâ€™s important that we get back to the United States Government providing these services.”