Bill Introduced to Provide Loan Repayment for CDC EIS Officers
Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-IL) introduced the Securing Experts to Control, Understand and Respond to Emergencies (SECURE) Act, H.R. 5998, on June 5. This bill, proposed by IDSA, would give CDC the authority to provide loan repayment for physicians who serve in CDC’s on-the-job training program in applied epidemiology, Epidemic Intelligence Service (EIS). Many physicians who participate in EIS are ID physicians, but EIS has struggled to recruit physicians as significant medical student debt drives more physicians to more lucrative career options. EIS officers have been on the frontlines of responses to public health emergencies including the Ebola and Zika outbreaks, the opioid epidemic, and the 2017 major hurricanes.
IDSA board member Tina Tan, MD, FIDSA captured Rep. Schakowsky’s interest in this issue during a meeting with the congresswoman’s staff in March. Please click here to email your congressional representative to urge them to support the SECURE Act. It only takes a minute or two but can have a significant impact.
IDSA is urging Congress to include the SECURE Act in broader legislation to reauthorize the Pandemic and All Hazards Preparedness Act. The more congressional representatives who support SECURE, the better chance we have of moving the bill forward.