National Strategy for The COVID-19 Response and Pandemic Preparedness

Executive Summary

We can and will beat COVID-19. America deserves a response to the COVID-19 pandemic that is driven by science, data, and public health — not politics. Through the release of the National Strategy for the COVID-19 Response and Pandemic Preparedness, the United States is initiating a coordinated pandemic response that not only improves the effectiveness of our fight against COVID-19 but also helps restore trust, accountability, and a sense of common purpose in our response to the pandemic.

On January 9, 2020, the World Health Organization announced that there were 59 cases of coronavirus-related pneumonia. Just one year later, the United States has experienced over 24 million confirmed COVID-19 cases and over 400,000 COVID-19 deaths. America has just 4% of the world’s population, but 25% of the world’s COVID-19 cases and 20% of all COVID-19 deaths. And our nation continues to experience the darkest days of the pandemic, with record numbers of cases, hospitalizations, and deaths. Over 77,000 Americans lost their lives to COVID-19 in December, and across our nation businesses are closing, hospitals are full, and families are saying goodbye to their loved ones remotely.

The National Strategy provides a roadmap to guide America out of the worst public health crisis in a century. It outlines an actionable plan across the federal government to address the COVID-19 pandemic, including twelve initial executive actions that will be issued by President Biden during his first two days in office:

The National Strategy is organized around seven goals:

  1. Restore trust with the American people.
  2. Mount a safe, effective, and comprehensive vaccination campaign.
  3. Mitigate spread through expanding masking, testing, data, treatments, health care workforce, and clear public health standards.
  4. Immediately expand emergency relief and exercise the Defense Production Act.
  5. Safely reopen schools, businesses, and travel while protecting workers.
  6. Protect those most at risk and advance equity, including across racial, ethnic, and rural/urban lines.
  7. Restore U.S. leadership globally and build better preparedness for future threats.

To execute on the National Strategy, the White House will establish a COVID-19 Response Office responsible for coordinating the pandemic response across all federal departments and agencies. Through the implementation of the National Strategy, the United States will make immediate progress on the seven goals. To monitor outcomes, the National Strategy includes the creation of publicly accessible performance dashboards, establishing a data-driven, evidence-based approach to evaluating America’s progress in the fight against COVID-19.

The federal government cannot solve this crisis alone. Full implementation of the National Strategy for COVID-19 will require sustained, coordinated, and complementary efforts of the American people, as well as groups across the country, including State, local, territorial, and Tribal governments; health care providers; businesses; manufacturers critical to the supply chain, communities of color, and unions. It will also require a global effort to contain the virus and advance health security.

America has always risen to the challenge we face and we will do so now. In collaboration with the people of this country, the United States government will lead an effective COVID-19 response that turns this crisis into a crucible, from which our nation will forge a stronger, better, and more equitable future.

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