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Advances in Preventive Medicine
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 301408, 9 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2012/301408
Review Article

Biosurveillance: A Review and Update

1Ohio Task Force 1-FEMA Urban Search and Rescue, Department of Emergency Medicine, The Ohio State University Medical Center, 4813 Cramblett Hall, 456 West Tenth Avenue, Columbus, OH 43210, USA
2Emergency Medicine, The Ohio State University Medical Center, 4734 Cramblett Hall, 456 West Tenth Avenue, Columbus, OH 43210, USA

Received 30 April 2011; Revised 18 September 2011; Accepted 10 November 2011

Academic Editor: Zygmunt F. Dembek

Copyright © 2012 Nicholas E. Kman and Daniel J. Bachmann. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Since the terrorist attacks and anthrax release in 2001, almost $32 billion has been allocated to biodefense and biosurveillance in the USA alone. Surveillance in health care refers to the continual systematic collection, analysis, interpretation, and dissemination of data. When attempting to detect agents of bioterrorism, surveillance can occur in several ways. Syndromic surveillance occurs by monitoring clinical manifestations of certain illnesses. Laboratory surveillance occurs by looking for certain markers or laboratory data, and environmental surveillance is the process by which the ambient air or environment is continually sampled for the presence of biological agents. This paper focuses on the ways by which we detect bioterrorism agents and the effectiveness of these systems.