U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has established the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA), which was authorized in the Pandemic and All-Hazards Preparedness Act, P.L. 109-417. This new office will be key in speeding up the development of drugs and vaccines to protect the American people from threats like bioterrorism and pandemic flu. BARDA will be in charge of the research and development of medical countermeasures to defend against chemical, biological, radiological or nuclear agents and emerging pandemic infectious diseases. HHS is currently recruiting a director for BARDA, who would report directly to the HHS Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response, Dr. Craig Vanderwagen.

For more information on BARDA from HHS, please see their press release here.