"The critical elements of a mission capability for biothreat response include: 1. A concept of operations (ConOps) to support use of fielded assays and coordination of response among the key stakeholders in the jurisdiction; 2. Training and certification of end-users; 3. Proficiency testing in the hands of the end-user in the field; 4. Sample collection and handling standards; and 5. Assays that have been properly tested by a qualified third party and certified to meet or exceed appropriately recognized national voluntary consensus standards for performance. This document describes significant progress toward development of the first, fourth, and fifth critical elements listed above and that are needed to support a field-based mission capability. […] In addition to describing the progress that has been made, this document describes which elements require remaining work to develop a field-based mission capability, as well as a framework for how these elements should be integrated to build a mission capability for biothreat detection in the field. The field-based mission capability will enhance communication and coordination for initial response to suspected biothreats among members of the response community, including: local HAZMAT and law enforcement, emergency response officials, EPA's On-Scene Coordinators and Environmental Response Team, FBI Hazardous Materials Response Teams, FBI WMD Coordinators, public health officials and reference laboratories that participate in the CDC [Centers for Disease Control and Prevention] Laboratory LRN [Laboratory Response Network]. These key stakeholders at the Federal, state and local levels have worked to develop several of the critical elements. Additionally, the laboratory-based mission capability is described in this document and is the essential confirmatory follow-on activity to any field testing for biothreat agents."
United States Department of Homeland Security: http://www.dhs.gov/