U.S. intelligence agencies have long failed to make detecting global pandemics a priority, current and former U.S. officials say, posing a challenge for the incoming Biden administration, which has pledged to step up the government’s ability to prepare for biological dangers.

In the wake of a global pandemic that has killed more than 250,000 Americans, there is growing support among President-elect Joe Biden’s advisers for broadening the definition of national security within spy and defense agencies and upgrading their ability to detect, analyze and respond to pandemics.

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“We are looking at whether our intelligence resources are appropriately focused on something that’s very important,” said a senior foreign-policy adviser to Mr. Biden.

Congress, which is likely to hold hearings next year on the U.S. response to the pandemic, is also taking a closer look at the intelligence agencies’ role.

A House Intelligence Committee report in September found that U.S. spy agencies pay insufficient attention to so-called soft national-security threats, such as infectious diseases and climate change. It recommended a review of the $85 billion intelligence budget and said the Central Intelligence Agency and other spy agencies should increase support to U.S. public-health agencies.

Read more at WSJ.