Bioterrorism Preparedness and Response: Use of Information Technologies and Decision Support Systems [Summary] [open pdf - 2MB]
"The Nation's capacity to respond to bioterrorism depends in part on the ability of clinicians and public health officials to detect, manage, and communicate during a bioterrorism event. Information technologies and decision support systems (IT/DSSs) have the potential to aid clinicians (e.g., physicians, nurses, nurse practitioners, and respiratory therapists) and public health officials to respond effectively to a bioterrorist attack. The Evidence Report from which this summary was taken details the methodology, results, and conclusions of a systematic and extensive search for published materials on the use of IT/DSSs to serve the information needs of clinicians and public health officials in the event of a bioterrorist attack. [...] The University of California at San Francisco (UCSF)--Stanford Evidence-based Practice Center staff, in conjunction with a panel of expert advisors and the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), developed the following four Key Questions to be addressed in this report: 1) What are the information needs of clinicians and public health officials in the event of a bioterrorist attack? 2) Based on the information needs identified for these decisionmakers, what are the criteria by which IT/DSSs should be evaluated with respect to usefulness during a bioterrorism event? 3) When assessed by these criteria, in what ways could existing IT/DSSs be useful during a bioterrorism event? In what ways are they limited? 4) In areas where existing IT/DSSs do not meet the information needs of clinicians or public health officials, what functional and technical considerations are important in the design of future IT/DSSs to support response to bioterrorism events?"
Evidence Report/Technology Assessment No. 59; AHRQ Publication No. 02-E027
Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality: http://www.ahrq.gov/