Individual clinician likely to identify next bioterrorism attack, expert says

According to Dr. Larry Bush, the doctor who made the initial diagnosis in the 2001 anthrax attacks, an individual clinician is likely to be the key player the next time there's a bioterrorism attack.
Bush, who works at JFK Medical Center in Atlantis, Fla., made the diagnosis of anthrax inhalation on October 2, 2001, after a confused and feverish Robert Stevens walked into the emergency ward. Bush notified health authorities and, in the process, kicked federal and state health agencies into high alert, possibly saving dozens, if not hundreds, of lives, MedPage Today reports.  
"What I saw was a man who - according to his wife - drove home 24 hours earlier from North Carolina and now was comatose, on a ventilator, and had meningitis," Bush said, according to MedPage Today. "A bacillus that causes meningitis is very rare. In the worst case, this is anthrax. And if it's anthrax, it's bioterrorism until proven different."
Stevens died three days later and, on October 19, 2001, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention linked the confirmed cases to anthrax that had been intentionally delivered through mailed letters or packages.
While officials say that the country is in a better position for a broad response to the anthrax attacks, such as new bio-containment labs and bioterror research centers, the tripwire for another attack is still the same as it was.
"It's going to be a practitioner who diagnoses the next covert attempt," Bush said, MedPage Today reports.
Bush said that the type of surveillance systems in place now for bioterrorism will never be enough because by the time the data is collated and a pattern is noticed, it will already be too late.
According to Dr. David Relman of Stanford University, the next attack, if there is one, will still probably be detected first by someone on the front lines of medicine as opposed to someone watching numbers on a chart.