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Ann Emerg Med. 1999 Aug;34(2):177-82.

Principles for emergency response to bioterrorism.

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National Center for Environmental Health, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA 30041, USA.


The recent occurrence of a series of anthrax-related hoaxes illustrates the need to educate emergency services personnel about how to best ensure patient and worker safety in the case of suspected exposure to biological threat agents. There are very few data to support the methods being used or the variation in current care. Emergency physicians, first responders, and hazardous materials response teams need a standardized approach to the management of patients who may have been exposed to biological threat agents. Currently recommended hospital infection control procedures seem appropriate for the level of risk involved with aerosolized biological threat agents. Such recommendations include standard and transmission-based precautions. These groups need a working knowledge of the isolation and infection control measures recommended for the treatment of patients exposed to those biological threat agents at outlined in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Guideline for Isolation Precautions in Hospitals.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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