report: U.S. not ready
U.S. is far from ready to handle a major outbreak
of the deadly SARS virus, concludes a report
commissioned by the Centers for Disease Control
and Prevention. The study, conducted by
university of Louisville researchers and submitted
Dec. 1, cites a lack of specialists who study
diseases, along with cuts in state and local health department
budgets as reasons for the
lack of preparedness.
current shortage of epidemiologists, public
health nurses and other personnel in the U.S.
will reach a crisis stage in the event of an epidemic," the
report says. "If these positions are
not restored, an otherwise containable epidemic may spread
the last year's SARS epidemic was essentially
kept from U.S. borders, health officials say it could
re-emerge any time, possibly aided by
the worse-than-norma! flu season.