RealNews

WHO Assails Wealthy Nations on Bioterror

Coordination of Defenses Poor in Simulation; U.S. Support for Agency Questioned. A severe lack of funding for surveillance and front-line defenses has left the World Health Organization unprepared to deal with a global bioterrorist attack involving an agent such as smallpox, according to a senior official who monitors disease outbreaks for the agency. The concerns were underscored by a recent exercise involving a simulated bioterrorist attack in which WHO observers unexpectedly had to be called in to broker breakdowns in coordination among the eight nations taking part. Several WHO officials also said they believe that U.S. bioterrorism defenses that mainly focus on domestic preparations could be ineffective against an attack involving a pathogen that emerges, or is released, in a remote part of the world and spreads internationally. Full Story

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