From an outbreak of mysterious lung-injury deaths to America’s near loss of measles elimination status, the beginning of the end of the U.S. HIV epidemic to the Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), CDC worked around the clock – and around the globe – to protect Americans from domestic and global health threats in 2019.
Here’s a closer look at some of the biggest health issues that CDC tackled this year.
Responding to outbreaks and threats
Lung Injuries linked to E-Cigarette use, Vaping, (EVALI)
CDC continues investigating the outbreak of lung injury associated with the use of e-cigarette, or vaping, products, together with state and local health departments and federal partners, such as the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
As of December 10, CDC reported 52 deaths and 2,409 cases of hospitalized EVALI by all 50 states, Washington D.C, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
In a breakthrough, CDC laboratories detected vitamin E acetate in the lungs of EVALI patients – direct evidence suggesting that this sticky substance is present in many EVALI cases. Investigation into other possible causes continues.
In September, CDC activated its Emergency Operations Center (EOC) to enhance the inter-agency response to the EVALI outbreak. EOC activation allowed the agency to increase its coordinated operational support for the response to meet the outbreak’s evolving challenges. CDC is providing assistance in epidemiology, disease surveillance, pathologic consultation, clinical guidance development, and communication.ISHN