Bioterrorism: Review of Public Health Preparedness Programs: Statement of Janet Heinrich Director, Health Care--Public Health Issues, Testimony before the Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations, Committee on Energy and Commerce, House of Representatives [open pdf - 1MB]
Research is currently being done to enable the rapid identification of biological agents in a variety of settings; develop new or improved vaccines, antibiotics, and antivirals to improve treatment and vaccination for infectious diseases caused by biological agents; and develop and test emergency response equipment such as respiratory and other personal protective equipment. Federal agencies are developing interagency response plans, participating in various interagency work groups, and entering into formal agreements with each other to share resources and capabilities. The U.S. General Accounting Office (GAO), however, found that coordination of federal terrorism research, preparedness, and response programs is fragmented, which raises concerns about the ability of states and localities to respond to a bioterrorist attack. Issues include poor state and local planning and the lack of hospital participation in training on terrorism and emergency response planning. This report summarizes the September 2001 report (GAO-01-915).
Government Accountability Office (GAO): http://www.gao.gov/