A Health Threat Anywhere Impacts Business Everywhere

With the globalization of travel and trade, dangerous pathogens that arise anywhere in the world are just a plane ride away. New microbes are emerging and spreading, drug resistance is rising and laboratories around the world could release dangerous microbes, either intentionally or accidentally. The 2003 SARs outbreak cost the world $30 billion in just a few months. More recently, an outbreak of Ebola in West Africa is raising concerns that the deadly disease could spread, a spike in U.S measles cases has been linked to travel in the Philippines, the H7N9 avian flu has resurfaced in China, and the mosquito-borne chikungunya virus is spreading rapidly in the Caribbean.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) works with global partners to build countries’ global health security capacities to better protect businesses–and the world—from infectious disease epidemics. Business Pulse: Global Health Security highlights what CDC is doing to protect businesses from global health threats and describes how business leaders can take action to protect their workforces in the United States and abroad. To access Business Pulse, visit http://www.cdcfoundation.org/businesspulse.

“Our capacity to find, stop and prevent diseases is crucial, not just here in the United States, but in countries around the world,” said CDC Director Tom Frieden, M.D., M.P.H. “Business leaders can join with CDC and our international partners to protect the health and safety of their employees.”

This issue of Business Pulse highlights specific global health security challenges faced by businesses as well as a question and answer feature between Kenneth Grossman, M.D., GE associate corporate medical director and Captain Jordan Tappero, M.D., M.P.H., director of CDC’s Division of Global Health Protection. The Global Health Security Business Pulse also features an interactive infographic that provides useful facts and links for connecting with CDC, along with online CDC resources.

“GE works in more than 160 countries. Global health threats can pose significant risks to our employees, customers and our business, especially because a serious threat in one region of the globe can rapidly become a serious threat anywhere else,” said GE Associate Corporate Medical Director Dr. Kenneth Grossman. “We count on CDC’s 24/7 surveillance, guidance and expertise to tell us what we need to know in an actionable and timely way to keep our business working, our customers running and our employees safe.”

The Global Health Security Business Pulse is the third in a series of quarterly business features created by the CDC Foundation, an independent nonprofit organization that helps connect CDC to the private sector to address important public health issues.

“This issue of Business Pulse is an excellent example of the CDC Foundation’s commitment to increasing awareness about the important public health work CDC does to protect the well-being of our nation’s citizens, businesses and economy,” said Charles Stokes, president and CEO of the CDC Foundation.