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United States Looking Past Ebola To Prepare For Next Outbreak: Report

Update Date: Nov 24, 2014 09:55 AM EST

Even before the Ebola epidemic in West Africa is brought under control, U.S. public health officials are girding for the next health disaster, according to a press release.

"It's really urgent that we address the weak links and blind spots around the world," Dr. Tom Frieden, director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, told The Associated Press. "Ebola is a powerful reminder that a health threat anywhere can affect us."

Obama administration has requested $600 million for the CDC to implement the so-called Global Health Security Agenda.

CDC has long trained public health workers in various countries to be disease detectives, but the international collaboration is supposed to be more comprehensive, the press release added.

CDC will expand its Ebola-specific work, such as training rapid response teams to investigate cases, "so they're better able to detect and respond to not only Ebola but other pathogens," said Dr. Jordan Tappero, CDC's director of global health protection, in the press release. "It's our intention to be there for the long-term to really build that public health capacity."

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