Central to our COVID-19 response has been the public health expertise and capabilities to manage communicable diseases that guided Singapore’s whole-of-government and whole-of-society Covid-19 responses. 
The COVID-19 experience highlighted areas which could further prepare us for future public health threats, including other pandemics. Firstly, we need to further build and maintain the strong public health expertise that has been developed and strengthened for COVID-19 and other communicable diseases over the years, to respond to the next crisis more effectively. 

Secondly, we need to ensure better integration and organisation of public health functions for communicable diseases, to improve overall command, control and coordination of public health responses. Thirdly, we need to retain the ability to activate rapid surge capacity within the Ministry of Health (MOH) in response to pandemics. 
In response to these, Minister Ong Ye Kung announced at the Parliamentary Debate on the White Paper on Singapore’s Response to COVID-19 that MOH will be forming the Communicable Diseases Agency (CDA), to enhance MOH’s overall readiness and preparedness for future threats from infectious diseases. 

CDA will oversee public health policy design and implementation, related to the management and control of communicable diseases. It aims to consolidate the overall command, control, and coordination of public health responses in both peacetime and crisis and strengthen public health expertise and capabilities that we have built up for the COVID-19 response.

In order to achieve these, CDA will consolidate the various public health functions that today resides in MOH, the National Centre for Infectious Diseases and Health Promotion Board. It will also oversee the National Public Health Laboratory.

Beyond domestic activities, the CDA aims to further extend Singapore’s global outreach and engagements with like-minded stakeholders. 

The CDA Planning Office (PO), sited within MOH, has been set up to drive the establishment of the Agency. The CDA PO oversees the development of governance, transition, change management, and establishment of the necessary corporate structures.