HHS secretary- U.S. prepared for bioterrorism

Sunday, September 30, 2001

WASHINGTON -- Health and Human Services Secretary Tommy Thompson says the United States is prepared to take care of any kind of biological attack.

In an interview to be broadcast on CBS' "60 Minutes" tonight, Thompson said: "We've got to make sure that people understand that they're safe. And that we're prepared to take care of any contingency, any consequence that develops from any kind of bioterrorism attack."

Thompson said eight staging areas around America are each stocked with 50 tons of medical supplies -- including vaccines, antibiotics and gas masks -- that can be moved within hours to the site of any bioterrorist attack. The secretary also said that 7,000 medical personnel are ready to respond to any crisis anywhere.

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