Wes Hickman or Kevin Bish
– U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) today announced the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has awarded the state $20.3 million to enhance preparations for a bio-terror attack.
The funds come from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and from HHS’ Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA). CDC will provide the state $13.2 million to improve public health system preparedness. The remaining $7.1 million from HRSA is to be used to bolster hospital preparedness.
The funds, part of a $1.4 billion package to states, can also be used to vaccinate health workers and emergency personnel for smallpox.
“During these difficult times, it’s critical our state be prepared to deal with a bio-terror attack,” said Graham. “Terrorists groups have shown an interest in obtaining biological weapons and no one doubts their willingness to use them. It’s important our medical personnel have the proper response plan and training to deal with this real threat.”