U.S. House subcommittee holds bioterror hearing

The House Subcommittee on Emergency Preparedness, Response and Communications held a hearing today on strategy and perspectives with regards to biological terrorism threats.

Among the witnesses scheduled to testify were Jim Talent, a former senator and vice chair of the Commission on the Prevention of Weapons of Mass Destruction Proliferation and Terrorism; Marisa Raphael, deputy commissioner of the Office of Emergency Planning and Response within the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene; and Dr. Charles Cairns, interim dean of the University of Arizona College of Medicine.

“The risk of a biological terrorist attack to America is an urgent and serious threat," Rep. Martha McSally (R-AZ), chairwoman of the subcommittee, said. "A bioattack could cause illness and even kill hundreds of thousands of people, overwhelm our public health capabilities, and create significant economic, societal and political consequences. Our nation’s capacity to prevent, respond to, and mitigate the impacts of biological terror incidents is a top national security priority. This hearing will highlight the threat of bioterrorism and ensure we’re taking the needed steps to prepare for and defend America against this threat.”

The subcommittee falls under the Committee on Homeland Security. 


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