UTHSC Awarded Grant to Strengthen Bioterrorism Preparedness

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UTHSC, in conjunction with other partners, has been awarded a $2.9 million grant from the Department of Health and Human Services to strengthen bioterrorism training for the nation’s health professions workforce.

The University of Tennessee Health Science Center (UTHSC), in conjunction with other partners, has been awarded a $2.9 million grant from the Department of Health and Human Services to strengthen bioterrorism training and education for the nation’s health professions workforce.

Part of a federal investment in bioterrorism preparedness, the two-year program is designed to provide bioterrorism-related continuing education opportunities and training for practicing healthcare providers.

The Health Science Center’s involvement represents a collaborative with UT Martin, UT Graduate School of Medicine, UT College of Veterinary Medicine, Oak Ridge National Laboratory and the Tennessee and Shelby County Departments of Health. Known as the Tennessee Integrated Training and Alert Network (TITAN), the collaborative represents a multi-agency approach to build upon existing educational programs and share the experience of experts across the state.

According to Karen C. Fox, UT Assistant Dean of the College of Medicine, the network will unite the efforts of these public agencies to equip the region’s workforce of healthcare professionals with the skills, knowledge and abilities to address the medical consequences of a bioterrorist attack or other catastrophic public health emergency.

Education and training will include class work, readiness drills and workshops.

As part of its involvement, UTHSC will provide project direction and management, access to its existing telecom network, and management of continuing education credits, as well as conduct evaluations and disseminate findings. The Health Science Center will also provide a variety of educational and training programs in allied health and host an annual workshop to exchange information between agencies and bioterror/public health researchers.

The project is expected to reach almost 11,000 healthcare professionals including physicians, nurses, dentists, emergency responders, pharmacists and veterinarians by the end of its two-year period.