Smallpox Weaponization Essay

988 Words 4 Pages
Register to read the introduction… In fact, during the early colonial period in the 16th century, British commanders considered issuing blankets infected with the disease to eradicate Native Americans. The idea of utilizing chemical/biological warfare was reconsidered during the American Civil War and again in World War II with unit 731. WHO has voiced its concerns that a smallpox weaponization could be easily manufactured and reproduced in large quantities. WHO also explained that due to the discontinuance of the smallpox vaccination for most of America’s military forces and civilian population, a smallpox outbreak will likely result in mass casualties throughout the nation. Even though the federal government maintains a large stockpile of the smallpox vaccination, the shelf life or potency of the vaccination depletes after a few years. For the military and the civilian population, early inoculation is the best treatment for the …show more content…
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is the primary agency for the national public health response to CBRN civil threats, such as a smallpox outbreak. A single diagnosis of the disease requires a quick, organized response by the CDC to protect the general public and prevent further casualties. CDC’s Smallpox Response Plan and Guidelines is a revised manual which delineates the plan and response for managing a smallpox outbreak in the civil population. This manual outlines and expounds upon proven containment measures to mitigate overall fatalities of a modern day smallpox epidemic. The manual contains many sections and numerous courses of actions for treating and reporting cases of …show more content…
The Surveillance and Containment section details two key strategies to contain a smallpox outbreak, and the Identification of Priority Groups section list high risk groups that should be given special considerations for smallpox vaccinations in the event of an outbreak. The two main strategies discussed in the Surveillance and Containment section are to identify and isolate smallpox cases to prevent the spread of the disease and identify, vaccinate, and monitor contacts of infected cases. Both of these surveillance and containment strategies have been successful in protecting the most vulnerable people in proximity to an infected individual—family. The Identification of Priority Groups section utilizes the same methodology as the previous section. Household contacts of a smallpox patient are given the highest considerations for first vaccinations, while those who had the least exposure to the patient or contaminated materials are secondary (CDC, 2002). In conclusion, throughout history the smallpox disease has inflicted a great number of fatalities on every continent, and because of its virulence nearly every government administration has established a response plan to minimize smallpox casualties. This disease has been considered a biological weapon since the 17th century and

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