PROs Enlisted to Educate Doctors on Bioterrorism. (Information Transmitted in 1-2 Days)

Article excerpt

WASHINGTON -- The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is enlisting the aid of peer review organizations to speed the delivery of accurate clinical information on bioterrorism.

"Special Alert" is the insignia of the new rapid distribution network by which peer review organizations (PROs) will help the CDC and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services get information on bioterrorism to health care providers within 1-2 business days of issue, said Dr. Stephen Jencks, assistant surgeon general, Public Health Service, and director of the CMS quality improvement group.

Dr. William Golden, director of general internal medicine at the University of Arkansas, Little Rock, said PROs are becoming the top of an information pyramid that allows them to rapidly distribute email "listservs" and "blast faxes," containing key information.

The PROs will use the distribution network to forward bioterrorism information distinguished as a "CDC Special Alert" or a "CMS Special Alert," depending on the source of the content.

The goal is to rapidly distribute concise and accurate information about bioterrorism that is easily identifiable by the recipient. …