Rand report proposes standards for mass antibiotic dispensing

first_img The standards are geared toward 72 cities that take part in the federal government’s Cities Readiness Initiative (CRI), a program launched by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in 2004 to prepare major cities and metropolitan areas to distribute antibiotics from the Strategic National Stockpile within 48 hours of a federal order to release them. Though federal law mandates that the standards be evidence-based, the Rand authors pointed out that the rarity of large-scale public health disasters means there is little evidence to base the standards on. Instead, the authors developed the standards by talking to practitioners, reviewing existing literatures, using mathematical modeling, and seeking feedback from an expert panel. Next stepsThe Rand authors suggest that HHS officials review the suggested standards, consider if changes are needed, then move forward to enact the standards. They also suggest that HHS consider whether the standards should apply to all locations that would receive antibiotics from the SNS, not just the 72 cities that participate in the CRI program. Oct 15, 2008 (CIDRAP News) – The Rand Corp., responding to a request from the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), recently unveiled a set of proposed standards for cities to use as they establish plans to distribute antibiotics to the public in the event of a bioterrorist attack or other public health emergency. The 133-page technical report, which appears on Rand’s Web site, covers four main topics: the number and location of points of dispensing (PODs), internal POD operations, staffing, and security. PODs are places where members of the public would go to receive antibiotics or other countermeasures in an emergency. See also: Internal operationsThe scale of the public health emergency will likely guide the selection of a dispensing protocol, and the report acknowledges the need for flexibility as cities make their operational plans. But the standards would require cities to establish and exercise at least one rapid-dispensing protocol that minimizes the need for licensed medical workers and gives instructions for directing recipients through the process, selecting the medication to dispense, releasing information about the medication, and dispensing the medication. The standards are designed to allow communities to be flexible and innovative in how they meet the 48-hour dispensing goal, the report says. “Moreover, the standards are intended to provide minimal requirements and should not discourage CRI sites from exceeding them,” it states. Instead of setting targets for numbers of PODs, the standards call for cities to estimate the number of people who would go to individual  PODs seeking antibiotics. Officials would then use a formula supplied in the report to determine how many PODs would be needed. Number and location of sitesThe authors recommend that the first planning step be to estimate the overall number of people who will likely come to PODs to pick up their medications, which will help them determine the number of PODs they will need. Estimating the number of people will likely depend on several factors that vary by location, such as tourism levels and the size of the urban workforce. Staffing provisionsThe authors predicted that recruiting adequate staffing for the PODs would probably be the most difficult aspect of conducting a mass dispensing operation and would present diverse challenges in different cities. “The standards development process revealed concern that uniform, one-size-fits-all staffing standards would fail to account for community differences, unnecessarily require jurisdictions to undo work already completed, and stifle innovation,” they wrote. Because rapid drug-dispensing actions are likely to push legal and liability boundaries, the standards require city officials to identify such conflicts and communicate them to those who have the authority to initiate legal changes. Another suggestion is that HHS establish an oversight committee to regularly review the standards in a way that engages stakeholders, seeks public input, and includes an appeal process. Security concernsThe standards would require cities to assess security at each POD, involve local law enforcement agencies in developing security plans, and provide for law enforcement presence at each site. In another nod to varying local needs, the authors give cities some leeway in the form of alternative standards regarding security staffing and formal law enforcement approval of security plans. For example, cities could use trained volunteers of private security firms if having sworn officers at every site were not feasible. “The standard assumes that individual jurisdictions are in the best position to define the scope of the population for whom they will be responsible for administering prophylaxis,” the Rand authors wrote. They also advised planners to factor in 12 hours for the CDC to get the drugs to warehouses and 12 hours to get the drugs to PODs. The Pandemic and All-Hazards Preparedness Act of 2006 requires HHS to develop performance standards for public health preparedness, and the HHS Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR) asked Rand to develop the proposed standards, according to the report. Public health officials will also need to recruit enough staff to operate the PODs and perform quarterly drills to keep in contact with them. The authors said the staffing requirement may be very large for some locations—as many as 6,000 in some metropolitan areas—so they offered an alternative standard under which officials would recruit and regularly contact only the core staff. Rand report on proposed antibiotic dispensing standardslast_img read more

Trump takes ‘The Beast’ for a lap around Daytona

first_imgUS President Donald Trump took “The Beast” — his heavily armored Cadillac limousine — for a lumbering lap of honor around the Daytona racetrack on Sunday in front of tens of thousands of cheering fans.Trump, who is gearing up for a re-election battle in November, was the ceremonial starter of the NASCAR Daytona 500 race, issuing the traditional order, “Gentlemen, start your engines!”The president’s motorcade then led the field of 40 race cars on a parade lap of the revered course — a first for a US president, according to NASCAR officials. Trump thanked the “tens of thousands of patriots” gathered at the Daytona International Speedway in Florida, describing the race as “pure American glory.””No matter who wins,” he told the crowd, “what matters most is God, family and country.””Rubber will burn, fans will scream and the great American race will begin,” he said in remarks met with chants of “USA, USA!”Travelling from his Mar-a-Lago weekend resort, Trump arrived at the racetrack on Air Force One, accompanied by his wife Melania, son Donald Trump Jr. and son-in-law Jared Kushner.The plane did a low flyover of the track, which has a capacity of about 100,000 spectators. Some fans in the crowd held up signs supporting Trump and chanted, “Four more years!”Florida is a key state in the election, and Trump has already been campaigning hard to persuade voters to return him to office in the November vote.”The Beast” is the popular name for the US president’s specially-designed car. The current model is reported to weigh about 10 tons and have bomb-proof windows five inches (13 centimeters) thick.Topics :last_img read more

ICPO wary of surge in illegal gambling activities

first_imgILOILO City – The enhanced communityquarantine could drive economically-displaced people to play games of chancefor money. On March 23, the following were caughtin Barangay Quintin Salas, Jaro: Mary Cris Sara, 29; Brixo Liboon, 59; andVictor Villarin, 47, all of Barangay MV Hechanova, Jaro. The five recent anti-illegal gamblingpolice operations were conducted in the City Proper and Jaro district. The quarantine is being imposed tostop the spread of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). The very limitedmovement of people and unavailability of public transport have forced manypublic and private businesses and offices to temporarily shut down, leavingpeople out of work and income-less. Also arrested on March 29 for “pusoy”but in Barangay Rizal Pala-Pala were Marvin Ilastron, 36; Remando Avilla, 55;Allan Arcones, 50; Carlos Nacaase, 42, of Barangay Tanza Timawa, Zone II, CityProper; and Joem Palomo for illegal cock derby. On March 29 the following persons werearrested in Barangay Tanza Timawa, City Proper for “pusoy”:  Rodolfo Cuambot, 30, and relatives, Ronil Cuambot,30; Joey Carbaquil, 35; Joebert Carbaquil, all of Barangay Washington,Escalante City, Negros Occidental; Oliver Cuambot, 28, of Sigma, Capiz;Bonifacio Jaspe, 31, of Cadiz City, Negros Occidental; Ronel Faigones, 18, ofBarangay Tigmarabo, Miag-ao, Iloilo; and RJ Labrador, 32, of Perasol Street,Binagawan, Iloilo. On the other hand, Rodolfo Bajade, 24,of Barangay South Fundidor, Molo district and Julius Borro, 25, of BarangayCalaparan, Arevalo district were also arrested. In the same period last year, the citypolice carried out only one anti-illegal gambling operation, said PoliceCaptain Shella Mae Sangrines, city police office information officer. The Iloilo City Police office (ICPO)is wary of a surge in illegal gambling activities. Seventeen people were arrested forillegal gambling here in five police operations from March 20 to 30, ICPO datashowed. On the other hand, the ICPO recordedonly two cases of theft between March 20 to 30. Last year in the same period,it monitored 13 cases./PNlast_img read more

Pollard awarded Pac-12 honors

first_imgUSC senior diver Collin Pollard had his personal best conference championships performance to date last week to earn Pac-12 Diver of the Month honors.This is Pollard’s second award of the season and USC’s fifth all-time.Pollard won his first-ever conference title on the platform, finishing with a score of 427.70. He finished second on the one-meter and fifth on the three-meter. His scores allowed the Trojans to come into this week’s Pac-12 swimming championships tied for the lead with Stanford.Pollard’s success against USC’s rivals to the north also contributed to his Diver of the Month selection — his victories in the one-meter against Cal and Stanford helped push USC to victories against both schools; the Trojans hadn’t swept their Bay Area opponents in a single season since 1997.Last year, Pollard made his first appearance at the NCAA Championships, where he finished 11th on the one-meter and the platform, and he will have the opportunity to return this season, beginning with the Zone E Championships next week.last_img read more