Tag Archive for Bioterrorism

U.S. Postal Service Operation Medicine Delivery Exercise Outcomes Summary

On May 5-6, 2012, the Minneapolis-St. Paul area conducted a major test of the National Postal Model for distribution of medicine to the public in an emergency, using U.S. Postal Service assets to supplement mass dispensing sites and other strategies. The May exercise, known as Operation Medicine Delivery, was the culmination of planning efforts that began in February 2004, with a memorandum of agreement signed by the U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services, the U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security and the Postmaster General. Parties to the 2004 MOA agreed to make USPS resources available for distributing emergency medicine in response to a bioterrorist attack. A subsequent presidential executive order (December 2009) called for the development of a federal capability to distribute medical countermeasures (MCM) in response to a bioterrorist attack.

(U//FOUO) DHS-Lawrence Livermore Unconventional Biological Laboratory Guide

(U//FOUO) Many innocuous reasons exist for the possession of some types of biological agents and associated laboratory equipment. For example, hobby, educational, or artistic uses such as home brewing or pilot-scale biotechnology research may include the same or similar equipment used in the malicious production of pathogens (see Figure). In some instances, however, the presence of a biological laboratory at an unconventional site could be an indicator of possible intent or capability to conduct bioterrorism.

Model Procedures for Responding to a Package with Suspicion of a Biological Threat

Local and world events have placed the nation’s emergency service at the forefront of homeland defense. The service must be aware that terrorists, both foreign and domestic, are continually testing the homeland defense system. In October 2001, a person or persons contaminated the U.S. mail stream with anthrax, resulting in illness and death. The potential threat of similar attacks continues, and the authorities continue to be called in to assess hoaxes and suspect materials. No community is immune from the threat. To protect the health and safety of the public, and to help deal with hoaxes and suspicious materials, clear procedures for assessing and managing biological threats are imperative.

NCTC Lone-Actor Terrorists with Biological Expertise: A Potential Threat with Limited Indicators

Elements of the U. S. government hosted an interdisciplinary, unclassified workshop to better understand the potential threat from independently acting terrorists with biological expertise. Such lone-actor terrorists have the potential to carry out high-impact biological attacks while generating few signatures, making detection or disruption of their efforts challenging. The one-day workshop explored the possible motivations, intents, and objectives of lone-actor terrorists who might consider conducting biological attacks; examined scientific infrastructure vulnerabilities that these individuals could exploit; and identified strategies to mitigate this potential threat.

Reuse of N-95 Respirators Briefing Overview and Summary

1. Current stocks of disposable N-95 respirators will not be sufficient to meet demands within the health care community.

a. Increased number of sick individuals;

b. Decreased stores and available stock-on-hand;

c. Limited production with dependence on international production facilities;

d. Production and delivery may be impacted by staff and employee absenteeism;

e. The pandemic may result in the prolonged requirement for respiratory protection.

District of Columbia Health Department “Cities Readiness Initiative Plan”

The Cities Readiness Initiative (CRI) is an emergency preparedness project intended to prepare 72 major metropolitan areas for an aerosolized anthrax terrorist attack covering a large geographic region and the subsequent need to provide prophylactic medication to the affected population. The National Capital Region (NCR) has been identified as a location to implement this initiative. This document outlines necessary and supplemental components that enable the rapid distribution of prophylaxis to large populations.

Public Health Emergency Preparedness and Response Plan for the Capital Area

The Capital Area Public Health Network is planning for the immunization or prophylaxis of the entire population in the region. This plan will serve a guide for a regional response to a local or regional event in the Capital Area. The plan is flexible to adjust to the scope of the event. POD response time and target numbers are specific to the particular event. These variables will dictate how many POD sites will be activated. This plan prepares for the worst-case scenario by identifying five POD sites located throughout the region to be used in large-scale emergencies. In order to balance clinic load, reduce congestion, and maximize facility operations, residents have been assigned to a specific POD by municipality.