UPMC Center releases recommendations for improved national health security

The UPMC Center for Health Security recently released recommendations for health security in 2014 that can help prepare the nation for potential health threats, including terrorism, natural disasters and disease outbreaks.

The UPMC Center named a number of health threats the world recently experienced, including the Boston Marathon bombing, the Fukushima nuclear plant accident and the outbreak of Middle East respiratory virus and examined how the world relied on its prepared health security plans in times of need. The UPMC Center argued that while health security is usually only present in the background, it is necessary to keep the nation safe in the face of threats.

The UPMC Center recommended seven steps the nation can take to be prepared in the event of a national threat. It argued that advanced planning can be the difference maker when an unexpected threat challenges a nation.

The UPMC Center's seven recommendations include increasing support for public health and hospital preparedness programs, increasing technological power and innovation for health security, working towards international biosafety standards in the face of a potential epidemic, improving disease surveillance and management, enhancing efforts to understand the consequences of nuclear and radiation incidents, increasing global health security cooperation and the development of new medical tools, vaccines and medicines to counter biological, chemical, nuclear threats, epidemics and antibiotic resistance.

While the UPMC Center said it is unlikely the nation will be able to make drastic improvements in each of the seven sectors, it can begin making small improvements in each sector to gradually enhance its health security programs by the end of 2014.