Good job, ladies! I subscribe to the Occupational & Environmental Medicine Board from Duke University. This came today:
In Emergency, Smallpox shots for Everyone
(Please visit the original website to view the whole article)
Finding Volunteers to Implement Federal Plan Cited as Potential Problem
by Ceci Connally
Washington Post Staff Writer
Tuesday, September 24, 2002; Page AO2
A federal emergency response plan for vaccinating the entire U.S. population against a smallpox attack envisions recruiting at least 1.3 million volunteers to staff health clinics 16 hours a day for a full week.
The mass vaccination guidelines, issued yesterday, outline an unprecendented medical challenege that public health experts say is hard to imagine: inoculating 288 million Americans quickly and calmly against the backdrop of a bioterrorist attack. Never in the nation's history has such a rapid, large-scale inoculation program been undertaken, although drafters of the guidelines said they drew on the lessons of smaller vaccination campaigns.
While federal officials have released little information on the potential threat of a bioterrorist attack, the Bush administration says it wants the country to be ready. Officials said they would treat even a single case of smallpox as a terrorist incident and move, quickly, with the help of states, to nationwide vaccinations.
"The purpose of this plan is to take the next step in getting stattes ready in the event of an attck," said Walter Orenstein, director of the National Immunization Program at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. "The goal here is to help states and localitites develop the capacity to provide vaccine to very large numbers of people as rapidly as possible."
In the 50-page document sent to state and local health commissioners, the CDC lays out a step-by-step scenario for dealing with smalpos -- from ordering refrigerators for storing vaccine to scheduling daily trash pickup at dozens of vaccination clinics. It urges states to identify and train personnel not only to administer the vaccine but also to handle security, transport people, brief the media, direct traffic, run instructional videos, collect medical histories, enter data into computers and respond to other emergencies.
"To do mass vaccination in 10 days would be a total nightmare," said Donald Leung, editor of the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology.
The plan instructs state officials to identify 20 sites for vaccinating every 1 million people. High schools, health clinics, arenas, theaters, conference halls and perhaps shopping malls could be used, according to the plan.
copyright2002 The Washington Post Company