Researchers from the non-profit Rand Corp. looked at the ability of local agencies to meet federal standards for responding to urgent-case reports of infectious diseases like bubonic plague, anthrax or botulism.
Of 19 local public health agencies called in 18 states, only two met the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s standards, which include prompt return of calls, being put in touch with someone who knew about the disease being reported and the ability of the agency to handle problems 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Read the whole story, “Local Health Agencies Faulted on Bioterror Response Times,” in Forbes. And please explain to me that we’re more prepared for terrorists than we were four years ago. But before you do:
In one instance, after being given a description of the classic symptoms of bubonic plague, a public health worker told the caller not to worry and to “go back to sleep,” because no other cases had been reported.