Open Recommendations (16 total)

Small Business Research Programs: Agencies Should Further Improve Award Timeliness

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1 Open Recommendations
Agency Affected Recommendation Status
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention The Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention should evaluate the effectiveness of steps taken to improve SBIR award timeliness and take any necessary additional steps in order to consistently meet SBA award timeliness guidelines. (Recommendation 7)
Open

Actions to satisfy the intent of the recommendation have not been taken or are being planned, or actions that partially satisfy the intent of the recommendation have been taken.

When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.

COVID-19: Continued Attention Needed to Enhance Federal Preparedness, Response, Service Delivery, and Program Integrity

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2 Open Recommendations
Agency Affected Recommendation Status
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention The Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention should assess the agency's needs for goods and services for the manufacturing and deployment of diagnostic test kits in public health emergencies. This assessment should evaluate how establishing contracts in advance of an emergency could help the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention quickly and cost-effectively acquire these capabilities when responding to future public health emergencies, including those caused by novel pathogens, and should incorporate lessons learned from the COVID-19 emergency. See the COVID-19 Testing enclosure. (Recommendation 2)
Open

Actions to satisfy the intent of the recommendation have not been taken or are being planned, or actions that partially satisfy the intent of the recommendation have been taken.

When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention The Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention should work with appropriate stakeholders—including public health and private laboratories—to develop a plan to enhance laboratory surge testing capacity. This plan should include timelines, define agency and stakeholder roles and responsibilities, and address any identified gaps from preparedness exercises. See the COVID-19 Testing enclosure. (Recommendation 1)
Open

Actions to satisfy the intent of the recommendation have not been taken or are being planned, or actions that partially satisfy the intent of the recommendation have been taken.

When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.

Maternal Mortality and Morbidity: Additional Efforts Needed to Assess Program Data for Rural and Underserved Areas

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1 Open Recommendations
Agency Affected Recommendation Status
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention The Director of CDC should take steps to systematically disaggregate and analyze maternal health program data by rural and underserved areas, and make adjustments to program efforts, as needed. (Recommendation 1)
Open

Actions to satisfy the intent of the recommendation have not been taken or are being planned, or actions that partially satisfy the intent of the recommendation have been taken.

When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.

COVID-19: Sustained Federal Action Is Crucial as Pandemic Enters Its Second Year

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2 Open Recommendations
Agency Affected Recommendation Status
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention The Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention should take steps to ensure more complete reporting of race and ethnicity information for recipients of COVID-19 vaccinations, such as working with states and jurisdictions to facilitate consistent collecting and reporting of this information. See Health Disparities enclosure. (Recommendation 12)
Open

Actions to satisfy the intent of the recommendation have not been taken or are being planned, or actions that partially satisfy the intent of the recommendation have been taken.

CDC neither agreed nor disagreed with this recommendation. As of March 2021, CDC stated that it is working to ensure more complete reporting of race and ethnicity information for recipients of COVID-19 vaccinations, such as by requiring providers that participate in CDC's COVID-19 Vaccination Program to report the race and ethnicity of vaccine recipients. We will continue to examine the ongoing work of HHS, CDC, and other component agencies regarding indicators of COVID-19 and disparities that exist for various populations.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention The Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention should incorporate key elements of a national strategy in the agency's COVID-19 Response Health Equity Strategy. These elements include (1) specific actions to achieve intermediate outcomes, such as increased access to testing; (2) how intermediate outcomes should be prioritized within its four broad priority areas; (3) who will implement actions to achieve intermediate outcomes; and (4) how the strategy relates to other relevant strategies. See Health Disparities enclosure. (Recommendation 11)
Open

Actions to satisfy the intent of the recommendation have not been taken or are being planned, or actions that partially satisfy the intent of the recommendation have been taken.

CDC agreed with this recommendation. CDC stated that it will take steps to include key elements of a national strategy in an internal version of its COVID-19 Response Health Equity Strategy to help with coordination and tracking, among other actions to coordinate health equity activities across various task forces and with federal, state, and local partners. In May 2021, CDC reported that it had implemented the Health Equity Action Tracker as an internal repository of health equity activities related to COVID-19. According to CDC, this tracker includes questions about alignment with the intermediate outcomes in the CDC Health Equity Strategy, as well as questions about additional outcomes and the impact of the activities. CDC added that it launched its Health Equity in Action website in April 2021 to share activities, partnerships, and resources to advance health equity. In May 2021, CDC also clarified that it does not agree with identifying how intermediate outcomes should be prioritized within the four broad priority areas of CDC's COVID-19 Response Health Equity Strategy. CDC noted that it does not intend to prioritize its intermediate outcomes because they contribute equally to the achievement of the final outcomes outlined within its COVID-19 Response Health Equity Strategy. Regarding who will implement actions to achieve intermediate outcomes, CDC reported that no one unit is responsible for implementing the strategy as a whole or for implementing each intermediate outcome. CDC added that the strategy provides a guide for the entire CDC response. CDC stated that it will continue to analyze and align key elements of a national strategy into its COVID-19 Response Health Equity Strategy, including identifying areas that are in alignment. We will continue to examine the ongoing work of HHS, CDC, and other component agencies regarding indicators of COVID-19 and disparities that exist for various populations.

Food Safety: CDC Could Further Strengthen Its Efforts to Identify and Respond to Foodborne Illnesses

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3 Open Recommendations
Agency Affected Recommendation Status
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention The Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention should implement a program performance assessment system for its multistate foodborne illness outbreak investigations, including setting performance goals, assessing progress toward achieving those goals with performance measures, and conducting program evaluations. (Recommendation 3)
Open

Actions to satisfy the intent of the recommendation have not been taken or are being planned, or actions that partially satisfy the intent of the recommendation have been taken.

As of April 2021, we are following up on this recommendation and will update it when we receive information.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention The Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention should develop a plan for addressing risks that the increasing use of culture-independent diagnostic tests poses to CDC's continued ability to identify foodborne illness outbreaks. (Recommendation 1)
Open

Actions to satisfy the intent of the recommendation have not been taken or are being planned, or actions that partially satisfy the intent of the recommendation have been taken.

As of April 2021, we are following up on this recommendation and will update it when we receive information.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention The Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention should make publicly available CDC's decision-making process for communicating about multistate foodborne illness outbreaks, including the scenarios it considers to aid in decision-making. (Recommendation 2)
Open

Actions to satisfy the intent of the recommendation have not been taken or are being planned, or actions that partially satisfy the intent of the recommendation have been taken.

As of April 2021, we are following up on this recommendation and will update it when we receive information.

COVID-19: Federal Efforts Could Be Strengthened by Timely and Concerted Actions

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1 Open Recommendations
1 Priority
Agency Affected Recommendation Status
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Priority Rec.
This is a priority recommendation.
As CDC implements its COVID-19 Response Health Equity Strategy, the Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention should take steps to help ensure CDC's ability to comprehensively assess the long-term health outcomes of persons with COVID-19, including by race and ethnicity. (Recommendation 8)
Open

Actions to satisfy the intent of the recommendation have not been taken or are being planned, or actions that partially satisfy the intent of the recommendation have been taken.

CDC agreed with our recommendation. In response to our recommendation, CDC noted in October 2020 that it was convening a team to develop a plan to monitor the long-term health outcomes of persons with COVID-19 by identifying health care surveillance systems that can electronically report health conditions to state and local health departments. CDC said that, as of May 2021, it had various efforts underway with external partners to assess long-term health outcomes. For example, CDC is funding a number of prospective studies in partnership with universities to understand the long-term effects of COVID-19, including a study examining the neurological health outcomes of a large cohort of Black and Hispanic or Latino persons who had COVID-19. In May 2021, CDC reported that its ongoing studies will follow patients for up to 2 years and provide information on the percentage of people who develop post-COVID-19 conditions and assess risk factors for the development of these conditions. According to CDC, these studies will assess different virus strains and antibody responses and the underlying immune response in people who develop post-COVID conditions. In addition, CDC reported that it is continuing to use multiple de-identified electronic health record databases to examine the persistence of symptoms and incidence of post-COVID conditions. CDC stated that it is also partnering with health systems to perform in-depth medical record reviews, which can provide insight into the patterns of health effects that patients are experiencing and improve its ability to characterize post-COVID conditions. For example, in April 2021 CDC published a Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report describing patients with post-COVID-19 conditions using electronic health records in an integrated health care system in metropolitan Atlanta. CDC added that it had updated its website on post-COVID conditions in April 2021. We will continue to examine the ongoing work of HHS, CDC, and other component agencies regarding indicators of COVID-19 and disparities that exist for various populations.