HHS researches bioterror attack responses

HHS researches bioterror attack responses

If a bioterrorism attack creates a public health crisis in six cities, how many hospital beds will be needed and how can the government monitor available beds in all those hospitals simultaneously?

Federal, state and local governments would need a standard system for answering such questions quickly. To come up with plans to meet a surge in capacity at medical facilities following a bioterrorism attack or other public health emergency, the Health and Human Services Department has awarded $1 million in research grants.

HHS' Agency for Healthcare and Research Quality is overseeing the surge response studies. One of the studies will fund planning for a real-time system that tracks hospital bed availability nationwide.

Another project will look at interhospital collaboration and the use of computer modeling to plan requirements, costs and outcomes by region.

About the Author

Mary Mosquera is a reporter for Federal Computer Week.

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