Fits and Starts: Reactionary Biodefense

Event Details
October 9, 2018 - 10:00am - 3:00pm

In October 2001, the nation responded to letters containing anthrax, at a time when it was still recovering from the terrorist attacks on September 11th. Since then, other biological events – such as the H1N1 influenza pandemic in 2009-2010 and the outbreak and global spread of Ebola in 2014 – have tested our national security. In addition to response and recovery activities, we also reacted to those events with new policy and programs. Over the years, some of these still exist, while others have languished and disappeared.

Join us on October 9, 2018, when we hold a meeting to reexamine the anthrax events of 2001, as well as subsequent biological events. We want to know where we are now and what else we need to do to ensure national biodefense.

As a recipient of one of the anthrax letters, former Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle, Panel member, will talk about what happened from his perspective and the concerns he still has. Academic, law enforcement, media, industry, and governmental experts will also share their experiences and viewpoints and talk about how far we have really come with biodefense.

The Panel will examine our national experience with the anthrax events of 2001, Hurricane Katrina, Ebola, a primate research laboratory, and the H1N1 pandemic, to answer the question - are we better positioned today to defend the nation against today's biological threats?

Tuesday, October 9, 2018

10:00 AM - 3:30 PM

Hudson Institute

1201 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW

Suite 400

Washington, DC 20004

See map

RSVP by Oct 2. Attendance is free, but registration is required. Lunch will be served. This event will also be webcast.


Agenda (subject to change)

10:00-10:15: Opening Remarks

10:15-11:00: No Substitute for Personal Experience

Former Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle will discuss his experiences with the 2001 anthrax attacks and what he feels still needs to be done to address the biological threat.

11:00-12:00: Panel 1 - Dealing with Anthrax

Current and former government officials will briefly discuss their experiences with the anthrax events of 2001, related response efforts, how far the Nation has come since then, and where it still needs to go with national biodefense.

* Scott R. Lillibridge, MD, former Special Assistant for National Security and Emergency Management, HHS

* Douglas L. Anders, PhD, Unit Chief, Scientific Response and Analysis Unit, FBI

* Andrew C. Cannons, PhD, Florida State Laboratory Director

12:00-12:30: Lunch and Video - Bioterrorism, Pandemics, and Preparing for the Future (part 1)

Video featuring a discussion with the Blue Ribbon Study Panel on Biodefense on the growing biological threat and steps the U.S. government needs to take in order to keep America safe, moderated by Max Brooks (scholar and author of World War Z).

12:30-1:15: Keynote - Hurricane Katrina as a Proxy

Renowned author/reporter will discuss the incredible lack of hospital preparedness for, and surge capacity during, the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, and whether the Nation is better prepared now, especially considering our continuing struggle to deal with emerging and reemerging infectious disease, such as Ebola.

* Sheri Fink, MD, PhD, author, Five Days at Memorial and War Hospital; correspondent, New York Times

1:15-2:15: Panel 2 - Dealing with Dangerous Diseases

Hospital, academic, and federal experts will briefly discuss their experiences with dangerous, naturally occurring diseases, related response efforts, significant changes to national and SLTT policy, and where the public and private sectors still need to go with national biodefense.

* Connie Savor Price, MD, Chief Medical Officer, Denver Health and Hospital

* Jay Rappaport, PhD, Director, Tulane National Primate Research Center

* Rear Admiral Stephen C. Redd, MD, Director, Office of Public Health Preparedness and Response, CDC

2:15-2:25: Break

2:25-2:55: Endnote - Looking to the Future

Former political appointee will discuss intentionally introduced, accidentally released, and naturally occurring biological threats, the value of forecasting, and how the Nation needs to push science, technology, research, and development for present and future biodefense.

* Tara O'Toole, MD, former Under Secretary for Science and Technology, DHS

2:55-3:00: Closing Remarks