Disease Surveillance Systems, Hearing of the Subcommittee on Emergency Preparedness and Response of the Select Committee on Homeland Security, House of Representatives, One Hundred Eighth Congress, First Session, September 24, 2003 [open pdf - 6MB]
From the opening statement of John B. Shadegg: "Today, we will be examining the role of disease surveillance systems in preparing our nation for bioterrorism. Clearly, the most preventive action we can take in terms of bioterrorism prevention and preparedness is to develop countermeasures against them so that even if terrorists strike, their intentions would be thwarted because the American public would be immune. The committee and the House took a critically important step by passing Project Bioshield, an effort to stimulate investment in bioterror countermeasures. I am pleased that funding for that important program was approved as a part of the homeland security appropriations conference report passed just earlier today. While we wait for the innovation of biotech, pharmaceutical and medical device companies to develop those countermeasures, however, the second most preventive thing we can do is to be looking at ways in which to be able to detect a potential outbreak through either surveillance systems or monitors so that we can take proactive steps to stem its spread. That is the focus of our hearing today. […] With passage of the Bioterrorism Act of 2002 and subsequent appropriations, Congress has invested over $2 billion in bioterrorism preparedness and response. The bulk of that money has gone to the Center for Disease Control [CDC] which spent over $1 billion upgrading public health laboratory capacity. Some of this money was spent to update and modernize many State and public health labs and computer equipment for improved communications ability. The CDC has been working to establish several information surveillance systems to move disease reporting from a paper-based system to one that capitalizes on new technologies. We hope to learn what sort of real-time analysis capabilities exist within our system today." Statements, letters, and materials submitted for the record include those of the following: John B. Shadegg, Christopher Cox, Bennie G. Thompson, Jim Turner, Donna M. Christensen, Jennifer Dunn, Jim Gibbons, Christopher Shays, Janet Heinrich, Joseph Henderson, John Loonsk, Paul Keim, Richard Platt, Jonathon Temte, Jeffrey Trent, Shelley Berkley, and Christopher K. Lake.
Serial No. 108-27; Serial No. 108-27
Government Printing Office, Federal Digital System: http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/