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J Bus Contin Emer Plan. 2012 Summer;6(1):47-54.

Is preparedness for CBRN incidents important to general practitioners in East London?

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1
South East Regional Epidemiology Unit, Health Protection Agency, London, UK. gavin.dabrera@hpa.org.uk

Abstract

General practitioners (GPs) have an important role in public health response to CBRN incidents, including disseminating information to worried patients and undertaking risk assessments of patients. The authors undertook the first known UK survey of GPs' CBRN preparedness to assess knowledge and attitudes towards CBRN preparedness among GPs in East London, in the area of the Olympic Park. A questionnaire was developed, focusing on GPs' self-preparedness for, and perceived roles in CBRN incidents, and GPs' access to resources and policies for dealing with such incidents. Of 157 GPs, 56 responded, although some responded collectively for their practice. The majority of respondents recognised roles for themselves in CBRN incidents, including recognition of illness, supporting decontamination, and appropriate reporting. However, 79 per cent of GPs also felt unprepared for such incidents. The most popular topic for training to address this was clinical presentation of CBRN exposures. Most practices had no policy for dealing with suspect packages and white powder incidents. Since this survey, guidance and training has been made available to local GPs. As the UK will host more events like the 2012 Olympics, preparedness for GPs will continue to be an important consideration in the UK.

PMID:
22948105
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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