RealNews

Little Evidence on Usefulness of Bioterrorism Surveillance Systems

Although surveillance systems to detect illnesses and syndromes related to bioterrorism have proliferated, researchers found little information about how good they would be at detecting bioterrorism and emerging infections. Researchers identified 115 systems that collect various surveillance reports. Only three had been evaluated for accuracy. Only two disease surveillance systems and no environmental monitoring system had been evaluated in studies published in peer-reviewed journals. “Given the striking lack of information on the timeliness, sensitivity and specificity, and ability of systems to facilitate decision making, clinicians and public health officials deploying these systems do so with little scientific evidence to guide them,” the authors say. Full Story

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