Improvements in State and Local Planning for Mass Dispensing of Medical Countermeasures: The Technical Assistance Review Program, United States, 2007-2014

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Abstract

Objectives

To evaluate and describe outcomes of state and local medical countermeasure preparedness planning, which is critical to ensure rapid distribution and dispensing of a broad spectrum of life-saving medical assets during a public health emergency.

Methods

We used 2007 to 2014 state and local data collected from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Technical Assistance Review. We calculated descriptive statistics from 50 states and 72 local Cities Readiness Initiative jurisdictions that participated in the Technical Assistance Review annually.

Results

From 2007 to 2014, the average overall Technical Assistance Review score increased by 13% for states and 41% for Cities Readiness Initiative jurisdictions. In 2014, nearly half of states achieved the maximum possible overall score (100), and 94% of local Cities Readiness Initiative jurisdictions achieved a score of 90 or more.

Conclusions

Despite challenges, effective and timely medical countermeasure distribution and dispensing is possible with appropriate planning, staff, and resources. However, vigilance in training, exercising, and improving plans from lessons learned in a sustained, coordinated way is critical to ensure continued public health preparedness success.

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