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Published On: Thu, Jul 23rd, 2015

Peter King’s bill, ‘First Responder Anthrax Preparedness Act’, placed on the Union Calendar

A piece of legislation, introduced by New York Congressman Peter King in March, to provide surplus vaccines and antimicrobials for preventing and treating anthrax for first responders, was placed on the Union Calendar Thursday.

Peter_King_Donkey_HoteyThe bill, HR 1300, amends the Homeland Security Act of 2002 to direct the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), for the purpose of domestic preparedness for and collective response to terrorism, to: (1) make available surplus vaccines and antimicrobials, and vaccines and antimicrobials with short shelf lives, from the strategic national stockpile for administration to emergency response providers who voluntarily consent to such administration; (2) establish any necessary logistical and tracking systems to facilitate making such vaccines and antimicrobials available; and (3) distribute disclosures regarding associated risks to end users.

Requires DHS to: (1) support homeland security-focused risk analysis and assessments of the threats posed by anthrax from an act of terror; (2) leverage homeland security intelligence capabilities and structures to enhance prevention, protection, response, and recovery efforts with respect to an anthrax terror attack; and (3) share information and provide tailored analytical support on threats posed by anthrax to state, local, and tribal authorities, as well as other national biosecurity and biodefense stakeholders.

Directs DHS to carry out a pilot program, which lasts at least 18 months, to administer such vaccines and antimicrobials to emergency response providers. Requires DHS: (1) prior to implementing such program, to establish a communication platform and education and training modules for the program;, to conduct economic analysis of the program, and to create a logistical platform for the anthrax vaccine request process; and (2) to select providers based in at least two states to participate in the program. Requires DHS to provide to each participating provider disclosures and educational materials regarding the risks of any vaccine or antimicrobial administered and of exposure to anthrax.

According to the Guide to Legislative Process in the House:

The rules of the House provide that there shall be:

First. A Calendar of the Committee of the Whole House on the state of the Union, to which shall be referred bills raising revenue, general appropriation bills, and bills of a public character directly or indirectly appropriating money or property.

This is commonly known as the Union Calendar and the large majority of public bills and resolutions are placed on it on being reported to the House.

 

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About the Author

- Writer, Co-Founder and Executive Editor of The Global Dispatch. Robert has been covering news in the areas of health, world news and politics for a variety of online news sources. He is also the Editor-in-Chief of the website, Outbreak News Today and hosts the podcast, Outbreak News Interviews on iTunes, Stitcher and Spotify Robert is politically Independent and a born again Christian Follow @bactiman63

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